The Ghana Railway Workers Union has declared an indefinite strike after a meeting with National Labour Commission(NLC) and the Ministry of Transport proved unproductive.
The union, last week threatened to embark on a strike on Monday, September 12, 2016 but was subpoenaed by the NLC to attend a meeting with the Ministry of Finance, and Ministry of Transport.
According to union, the Ministry of Finance failed to turn up, hence the deliberation was inconclusive.
The workers have demanded for salary arrears for two months, as well as SSNIT contributions.
Speaking to Citi Business News, the General Secretary of the Railway Workers Union, Godwill Ntarmah said that the meeting could not reach an understanding due to the absence of the Finance Ministry.
According to him, the absence of the Ministry of Finance showed that government was not ready to address the issue since the Finance Ministry is the only organization that can release the funds.
“The Minister of Transport even though he didn’t come, he was represented by the Chief Director and two other officials. At the end of the day without the Finance Chief Director it was difficult to come to an appreciable agreement,” he said.
He pointed out that until the union receives the funds it will not call off the strike since the Ministry of Finance has not attached seriousness to the issue.
“We have stopped the trains, demanding our release. If the release does not come, we are stopping the trains as long as the money is not coming. We have already engaged the Ministry of Transport. It all boils down to the Ministry of Finance,” he said.
Touching on how railway workers have been neglected, Mr. Ntarmah stated that the sector is always treated with disdain.
“We are government workers. We are also Ghanaians. We are determined to get our money. We are workers of the state. We cannot be treated anyhow,” he warned.
Debunking the notion that the strike will have no effect, Mr. Ntarmah stated that market women will be hit the hardest by the strike since they patronize the trains.
“This company is for the State, it is sad when people say the strike will have no effect. But let me tell you one thing. If you are here and you see how the train is patronize in the morning and in the evening you will revise that view. Let’s all wait and see the impact,” he said.
By: Lawrence Segbefia/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana