Organised Labour Threatens Demo Or Strike
Nine organized labour within the public services are appealing to the NDC government to revert or otherwise stop interfering in schemes registered and approved within the Public Services by National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA).
The labour unions, together, have registered their displeasure over the government’s imposition of a trust-Pension Alliance Trust Ltd to run the 2nd Tier Pension Scheme for all workers in the public services on government payroll.
If government, according to the organized labour, by 14th July, 2014 fails to issue directives for the transfer of funds to the various public sector schemes, they will advise themselves.
Therefore, the joint action was enforced by CLOGSAG, GNAT, NAGRAT, GMA, TEWU, HSWU, GRNA, IMC JUSAG and GHOSPA to kick against the ‘blatant use of force’ by government to manage schemes which were constitutionally unacceptable.
The Executive Secretary of CLOGSAG, Isaac BampoeAddo noted it was not right by government to appoint a company that has not obtained a registered and licenced scheme by NPRA as a sole trust for all public services.
According to him, nowhere within the National Pensions Act, 2008 (Act 766) suggests that government should appoint a trust and impose a scheme on workers.
‘it would be morally wrong to take control of money that does not belong to you, we deem it puzzling that the government would find it convenient to unilaterally enter into a contract with Pensions Alliance Trust to manage the contributions of each public service worker in the various public services,’ the Executive Secretary of CLOGSAG stated.
He said it was the benevolence of government to allow the implementation of the three tier pension scheme that is made up Mandatory Basic Pension Scheme (1st Tier), Mandatory Occupational Pension Scheme (2nd Tier) and Voluntary Pension Scheme (3RD Tier).
However, with the intentions that by allowing trust other than SSNIT to manage the 2nd Tier there would be competition in the investment of pension funds that would improve the lump sum benefits to retirees and enhance their income security.
Hence, raising eyebrows within these labour groups over the sudden decision by the government to impose a Pension Alliance Trust to manage their contributions.
Meanwhile, after the new pensions law, National Pensions Act, 2008 (Act 766) was promulgated on 12th December, 2008,the law caters for the establishment of a contributory three-tier pension scheme with a National Pension Regulatory Authority (NPRA).
The NPRA will approve, regulate and monitor trustees, Pension Fund Managers, Custodians and other institutions relating to pension matters and advise government on the overall policy on pension matters in Ghana.
The scheme includes Health Sector Occupational Pension Scheme set up by the Health Service Workers Union (HSWU), Ghana Registered Nurses’ Association (GRNA), Ghana Medical Association (GMA), Ghana Physician Assistants’ Association, (GPAA), and Government Hospitals Pharmacists’ Association (GHOSPA).
Ghana Educational Service (GES) Occupational Pension Scheme set up by Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), Teachers and Educational Workers Union (TEWU), National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) and Coalition of Concerned Teachers (CCT).
Judicial Service Occupational Pension Scheme set up by Judicial Services Staff Association of Ghana (JUSAG), and Hedge Master Trust Occupational Pensions Scheme set up by Civil and Local Government Staff Association, Ghana (CLOGSAG).
Abubakari Seidu Ajarfor
The Punch Newspaper
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