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General News of Friday, 1 February 2008

Source: Space FM,Sunyani

Audit Service Threatens Strike

Space FM,Sunyani - The Brong-Ahafo Regional Branch of the Audit Service, has called on the Audit Service Board and Auditor Generals Department to urgently implement the new salary structure, or they shall advise themselves. Members of the union, in solidarity with their colleagues in the three Northern regions, have resolved to put on red bands, as an initial warning and reminder to the authorities, on the undue delay of the implementation of the new salary structure.

At a meeting in Sunyani, the Regional Chairman of the union, Mr. Joseph Anamoo, flanked by his Secretary, Mr. E.R Bennin and an Executive Member, Anne T. Ninfaabeliede, disclosed that in October, 2006 the Audit Service engaged a consultant to come up with proposals for a new salary structure for the Board?s consideration. He said the consultant?s report, together with explanatory memorandum and the basis for the revision of the salary structure, was sent to the Public Service Commission (PSC) in accordance with Article 186(3) (a) of the Constitution. Mr. Anamoo told Space FM in a telephone interview that the PSC was convinced and established the need for an upward review of salaries, after studying the memorandum. The union, he said, was reliably informed that the Office of the President, by letter No. SCR.A14\12 dated September 17, 2007, requested from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning (MOFEP) comments on the proposed salary structure, as well as the payment of the arrears. He said the MOFEP, by letter No. PAD\07\SAL.1 dated November 9, 2007, responded amongst others that the 2007 Budget could not accommodate the proposed salary increase, and that the proposed salary structure should be referred to the Fair Wages Commission for assessment.

?We wish to reiterate that although the audit service is part of the public service of Ghana, the mode of determining the conditions of service is unique and this is a constitutional requirement, what is more, the Fair Wages Commission operates under an Act of Parliament and under section 3(a) and 4 of Act 737,? he noted, indicating that their function and scope did not cover the determination of emoluments under article 71 of the Constitution.

The chairman said the union, therefore, sees the action of the Presidency and the MOFEP as a deliberate ploy to frustrate the staff of the audit service, threatening to advise themselves should their request fall on deaf ears.

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