Gov’t can’t yield to Organised Labour’s demands – Haruna Iddrisu
Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Haruna Iddrisu, has stated that despite the obvious political benefits government stands to gain from yielding to the demands of Labour would bring, it would not be economically feasible.
Wednesday’s demonstration by Organised Labour saw thousands of workers pour onto the street to chastise government for the recent increases in tariffs and taxes.
They also demanded a 50 percent increase in the salaries of the public sector workers.
Labour unions have been engaged in weeks of negotiations with the government which have often ended in deadlock, with both sides failing to agree.
The situation forced the unions onto the streets in a bid to persuade government to accept their demands.
President John Dramani Mahama stated that he would not be pressured by labour unions into approving payments not originally budgeted for.
The recent agitations by labour were seen as a test of the president’s resolve with many suggesting that he would cave in to the demands, with less than ten months to go until this year’s polls.
However, speaking to the media, Haruna Iddrisu insisted that the need to end the current power crisis was greater than any political advantage that would be gained from accepting Labour’s demands.
“Having followed the action by Organised Labour, a more easy decision, which would be politically expedient particularly, would be for government to say I yield to the request of labour. But the economy will not satisfy that request,” he explained.
“The President will not take any political expedient decision that will hurt the fortunes of the economy and strain it further, particularly decisions that will impede his quest to put an end to dumsor. Be that as it may we promise as government that we will make some overtures to organized labour.”