New minimum wage out this week

Nii Armah Ashitey

Nii Armah Ashitey

A new minimum wage for 2013 will be announced by the National Tripartite Committee (NTC) this week, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Nii Armah Ashitey, has said.

The decision to announce a new minimum wage followed a meeting of the NTC, comprising representatives of the government, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) and the Employers Association of Ghana (EAG) to discuss the new minimum wage in Accra Tuesday.

The minister, who also chairs the NTC, said the new daily minimum wage would be expected to take effect from Friday, April 19, 2013.

The stakeholders expect a 35-per cent increment over the current minimum wage of GH¢4.48.

The meeting also discussed, among other things, labour market information, employment issues and incessant agitation on the labour front.

Representatives of the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC), the National Labour Commission (NLC) and other stakeholders also attended the meeting.

Nii Ashitey expressed regret that the issue of market premium had been taken out of context by many professional bodies, leading to incessant labour agitation.

He challenged labour unions to sensitise their members to the Labour Act of 2003 to avoid workers’ mistrust of the government and employers.

The minister was optimistic that the new wage would be accepted by all the parties.

Nii Ashitey said the government intended to launch a forum to discuss a review of the Single Spine Pay Policy (SSPP).

The General Secretary of the TUC, Mr Kofi Asamoah, who led the negotiating team from organised labour, said the delay in announcing the 2013 minimum wage was likely to trigger more agitations, particularly with the approach of this year’s May Day celebration.

He expressed the hope that the new minimum wage would help address the concerns being raised by labour unions.