Organised Labour has said it wants the government to engage better with the social partners for home-grown solutions to development and employment creation. It said for decades, the country had resorted to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) but that had not resulted in the development of the country.
The solution to that was for the social partners, comprising labour, employers and the government, to sit down, talk and think through challenges for the country’s own solutions, it said.
In line with that focus, organised labour has drafted a document on social partnerships and how that can be effectively used for fruitful engagements and home-grown solutions for the transformation of the economy and the creation of decent jobs.
The Secretary General of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), Dr Yaw Baah, disclosed this to the Daily Graphic on the sidelines of the 2018 Organised
Labour Forum in Accra yesterday.
The forum, organised with the support of the Friedrich Egbert Stiftung (FES), was on the theme: “Sustainable development goals and decent work: The role of social partners”.
Social partnership is the basis for collaboration among workers, employers and the government for mutually beneficial outcomes on the labour front.
The partnership is alluded to in the Labour Act 2003 (Act 651) by the establishment of the National Tripartite Committee (NTC) in Section 112.
Section 113 of the Labour Act sets the functions of that relationship among employers, employees and the government, which include the setting of the national daily minimum wage (NDMW) and also deliberations on issues about labour market employment and industrial relations.
“Immediately after the May Day celebrations, we will be submitting our proposals to the government,” Dr Baah told the Daily Graphic.
“In the proposal, we have been specific about what should be done, those to be included in the deliberations to find local solutions to our challenges and the scope of the discussions,” he said.
He said the proposals would expand discussions on only the NDMW by labour and other partners within the NTC framework to cover critical issues about an economic transformation that created jobs.
“This is our goal. We have also made some important proposals on pensions and we hope to be engaging on the Sustainable Development Goals, pensions, poverty and economic growth for job creation,” he said.
Earlier, while welcoming workers to the forum, Dr Baah had criticised the fact that for decades the country had chosen IMF policies over well-thought-out local solutions to economic and employment creation challenges.
He said that choice had, in the long run, not transformed the economic fortunes of the country.
The secretary general said the creation of jobs was one of the greatest challenges of the country and it was time the government realised that the many years of IMF policy implementation had not helped in that direction.
He expressed the assurance that the strategic partnerships provided under the SDGs and captured in the labour law of the country would ensure that the social partners would work together for decent job opportunities in the country.
He added that the SDGs provided an important framework for development, hence organised labour’s interest in them.
He said the country had no excuse for not achieving the goals by 2030.
The acting Director-General of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), Dr Grace Bediako, in her keynote address, said the strategic partnership to strengthen dialogue, one of the goals of the SDGs, was already one of the core strengths of organised labour.
Detailing the SDGs and how Ghana was working towards their attainment by 2030, she said the country’s strides in achieving the Millennium Development