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General News of Saturday, 24 December 2016

Source: Gabriel Amoah, Kumasi

NUGS awaits president-elect on increased NSS allowance

THE Leadership of the National Union of Ghana Students has stated that even though it appreciates the recent 60 percent increase in allowance of national service personnel, it would be very prudent that the incoming Nana Akufo-Addo-led government took a very critical look into it and seek wider consultation and advice before its implementation.

While commending the outgoing government for the increments, the students nonetheless have indicated their willingness to wait for official declaration from the incoming government since they will be the ones to implement them
Yiadom Boakye Emmanuel, Coordinating Secretary of the NUGS at a press conference yesterday, also appealed to national service personnel not to jump in ecstasy with the huge increment of their allowances; instead, they must prepare to work closely with the incoming New Patriotic Party administration, to ensure the proper thing is done for the benefit of all.

The outgoing government of President John Dramani Mahama, early this week made a last-minute approval of a request from the National Service Secretariat to increase the allowance of service personnel by about 60%.

This increment means service personnel will from January 2017 be paid a monthly allowance of GH¢559 from the GH¢350 they currently receive.

A section of Ghanaians have described the government's action as "arrogance and show of lack of respect". They believe that what NDC government has done is a deliberate attempt to frustrate and sabotage the incoming Nana Akufo-Addo government, with huge debt.

The students are hoping that the brouhaha surrounding the increments would be put to rest, once the incoming government speaks on the matter.
About 70,407 service personnel are currently serving in various institutions in the public and private sectors.

The acting Executive Director of the National Service Secretariat, Michael Kpessah Whyte, said the increment followed series of complaints from service personnel who said the current allowance was woefully inadequate considering their expenses and cost of living.

In a statement signed by the Head of Public Relations, Ambrose Entsiwah Jnr., the secretariat said the government had already released funds for the payment of all personnel till the end of December 2016, and had also approved its budget for the year 2017.

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