Striking Ghanaian workers have finally bowed to an order from an Accra High Court to resume work.
This was after a number of the unions were served with orders of the court to halt the strike following a ruling last Friday, after the government filed an ex-parte motion asking for a declaration that the strike was an illegality.
The unions however declined to obey the court order since they claimed they had not been served with copies of the ruling.
But after some of them received the court order yesterday, they decided to give in.
Workers have since called off the two-week old strike over the management of their tier-two pension funds.
Spokesman for the Forum for Public Sector Registered Occupational Pension Schemes, Reynolds Ofosu Tenkorang, who addressed a press conference in Accra, said “we are law abiding citizens and have decided to obey the court order from today. But we want to re-emphasise that the suspension of the strike does not mark the end of the struggle.”
He therefore declared a suspension of the strike for a week.
“If by one week from today, the dispute is not resolved, we shall resume the strike,” he noted.
“We want to say that we are poor workers fighting to protect our future when we are not strong to work. We have no army or state security apparatus behind us. We have no means to match government’s might and resources but we have a belief that what is happening is a sheer display of power by the government to overrun the good sentiments of workers,” spokesman for the group said.
He therefore indicated their preparedness to use legal means to ensure that they are not short-changed, accusing government of devising means to split their front.
So far the controversial tier-two pension scheme is believed to have accrued to GH¢1.64 billion, far more than the almost GH¢450 million the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Haruna Iddrisu, indicated at a recent press conference.
Chief Executive of the National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA), Laud Senanu, claims the GH¢1.64 billion figure represents contributions from the public, private sector workers as well as the interest accrued on investment of funds.
There are speculations that the money is far more than that since government owes public workers more than 10 months SSNIT and tier-two contributions.
But the workers insist there are still lingering issues with the management of the tier two pension funds and are demanding full disclosure and a complete control over the management of funds accrued to the scheme.
Government insists it has appointed Pensions Alliance Trust (PAT) to manage the funds on behalf of public workers, leading to a standoff between the two sides.
Source: Charles Takyi-Boadu – Daily Guide