General News of 2014-08-15

300 workers to lose jobs over gov’t debt

Over 300 workers of various publishing companies in Ghana will lose their jobs by close of August 2014.

This is due to government’s huge indebtedness to the publishing companies.

The Management of the affected companies have written to dismiss some of their workers due to government’s indebtedness to them.

The letters seen by Citi News said the payment of salaries had become difficult due to the non-payments of arrears owed them by government; hence the decision to terminate their appointments.

Government contracted the Ghana Publishers Association to supply books to various secondary schools across the country at a cost of $32 million.

The publishers involved in the distribution include Winmat Publishers Limited, Approachers Publishers Ghana Limited, Sedco Publishing Limited and Adwinsa Publications Ghana.

Government’s indebtedness has forced some publishing houses to close down.

The Education Ministry in 2013 ordered the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) to pay the publishers but they are yet to be paid.

The association threatened to drag the Ministry to court over the delayed payments because they had exhausted all avenues to get their monies paid.

The spokesperson for the workers who will be laid off, Emmanuel Tetteh, told Citi News, government must as matter of urgency pay their arrears to save their jobs.

“The government should pay our employers so that we can keep our jobs,” he pleaded.

Mr. Tetteh described their situation as “very, very bad. We are to lose our jobs…our salaries have not been paid on a regular basis and so they decided that the only option now for them is to lay us off.”

Meanwhile, Citi News understands the workers are set to stage a massive demonstration in the coming weeks.

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