The Trades Union Congress (TUC) is dissatisfied with the recommendation by the Prof. Yaa Ntiamoah-Baidu Emoluments Committee to significantly increase salaries paid to Article 71 Officeholders.

Public Relations Officer of TUC, Naa Ayeley Ardayfio, said such a recommendation if approved by Parliament will only demoralize workers in the public sector, hence affecting productivity.

According to her, workers in the public sector have been provided with a woeful six per cent increase in their salaries by the Tripartite Committee whereas the President is expected to receive approximately double of the emoluments paid to him.

Such a decision by the Tripartite Committee she stated cannot be lauded looking at the dire effects the Covid-19 pandemic has had on the economy.

“We are looking at a year when Tripartite settled on as woeful as 6 per cent increment for minimum wage and so if you see the first gentleman of the land having an increment of approximately over 100 per cent, then you are also a worker, you ask yourself, ‘why do I have to kill myself for a country that does not give a hoot about me?’ That is just to put it plainly because it is so demoralizing.

“If you look at the ordinary public sector worker and the kind of take home, I’m not even looking at the annual basics, and the kind of take homes in these times, I mean, sometimes, you are just at a loss for words as to what is really going on.

“It beats my imagination. You’d think that if somebody came to me saying ‘put me into a position of power and that I will do this,’ I ought to think again because people speak from one side of their mouth and the actions that follow are different so it is very demoralizing for ordinary workers,” she told JoyNews.

TUC’s concerns follow the Prof. Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu Emoluments Committee’s recommendation to Parliament urging that the President’s salary be increased from GH₵29,899 to GH₵47,277, as well as increase the salaries for Members of Parliament and Ministers, among other Article 71 Officeholders.

As of 2016, ordinary public sector workers earned about six per cent of the monthly average salary of Article 71 Office Holders.

Article 71 Office holders include the President, the Vice-President, the Speaker of Parliament, the Chief Justice and Justices of the Supreme Court.

The rest are; Members of Parliament (MPs), Ministers of State, political appointees, and public servants with salaries charged to the Consolidated Fund but enjoying special constitutional privileges.

On the other hand, per the Public Services Commission Act, 1994 (Act 482), public sector workers are persons who work in; the Civil Service; Judicial Service; Audit Service; Education Service; the Prisons Service; Parliamentary Service; the Health Service; Statistical Service; National Fire Service; Customs, Excise and Preventive Service; Internal Revenue Service; Police Service and Immigration Service among others.