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Opinions of Wednesday, 28 July 2021

Columnist: Daniel Yiadom Boakye

4% public sector base pay increment: Is TUC now the mouthpiece of government?

Headquaters of the Trade Unions Congress in Accra Headquaters of the Trade Unions Congress in Accra

As an Ashanti who observed people crying at different funerals in varying ways, it is far more easier to detect people who cry more than the bereaved than any other person who hails from outside that region.

Those who cry more than the bereaved most often than not, have ulterior motives that drive them to go extra mile in their crying expedition because they may have been happy for the death of the deceased and are crying ironically for reasons best known to them.

This funeral crying analogy is applicable to the story behind TUC's attempt to calm the nerves of public sector workers for whatever reasons they alone are privy to.

For starters, I have variously commended this government and have also acknowledged in my previous articles on the fact that COVID-19 has affected the global economy of which Ghana is subset, so it could not really be the point that I do not appreciate the challenges it poses to our national economy.

However, certain political and economic decisions render any attempt at rationalising this 4 per cent increment of public sector pay moot and untenable that respectfully the TUC should have effrontery to defend.

It is in this same Covid era that Members of Parliament have a wopping 100 000 United States dollars as car loans, a privilege the government could have shelved on the account of Covid and its associated economic trepidation.

The attempt to bring vaccination of workers as part of the rationalisation for the 4 per cent is, for me, the lowest ebb TUC could go in trying to woo public sector workers to accepting this rather unfortunate economic inequality perpetrated on workers in the public space.

It begs the question as to whether the TUC is a representation of workers' interest, the government or an interest yet to be known.

The stratification of the Ghanaian society into politicians with wanton privileges and civil servants with poor conditions of service has been the root cause of brain drain and this needs addressing for our progressive forward match as a country.

This government should understand that the Ghanaian voter has become increasingly sophisticated so much that squeezing him or her for 3 years only to make life better on the election year is a prevarication that is fruitless in its attempt to retain power.

For the insult on WhatsApp platforms of workers in the public sector on this government is becoming too much.