Dr. William Baah boateng, a labour economist has described Labour issues as generally self-centered. This was in reaction to calls by President John Mahama during his May Day Speech, for public sector workers not to be too self-centered in their wage demands but support government in widening the tax net.
Speaking on MultiTV’s Current Affairs program, pm:EXPRESS, Dr. Baah-Boateng described labour as generally selfish emphasizing that government, workers, employers all try to maximize utility based on what they want.
‘’As a student of economics, l will say that labour is self centred because workers will make sure their incomes are not eroded by prices hence they will always ask for more, employers will also want to maximize profit, so they will make use of labour service and so will government’’.
Dr. William Baah Boateng called on government, workers and employers to follow the labour laws no matter the impediments to resolve the current workers agitation.
‘’The Supreme Court hearing tells us that if we allow our institutions to work the country will grow. The National Labour Commission and the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission are weak. They must be resourced and strengthened so that some of these issues will be resolved’’, he said.
There should be an informal way to resolve the labour agitations; parties should not take entrenched positions since strike actions are part of industrial relations, as the last resort and it is unavoidable so far as there are workers and employers.
The labour economist believes a lot of controversies could have been avoided if technocrats implemented the single spine pay policy.
‘’We allowed politics to lead us in the implementation of the single spine policy. Politicians must leave some of these for technocrats and allow them to work.’’
He added that the heightened expectations of workers with the introduction of the single spine policy was not managed accordingly leading to the current hullabaloos.
Dr. Baah Boateng agreed to arguments that work should commensurate remuneration.
‘’what people do not understand is that, the single spine is paying jobs and not individuals, the jobs must be evaluated to pay workers accordingly. The job of a teacher is different from the minister or the MP so we need to look at all that and not to talk out of emotions’’
He was however worried about how the minister or MP’s job will be evaluated and made transparent for Ghanaians to understand the worth of their salaries and not to compare with other classes of workers.