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Government moves to avert strike by rail workers

Source: Ghana | | Faustine Akwa
The Office of the President will later Wednesday convene a meeting with the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission, the Transport Ministry and the leadership of rail workers in an attempt to avert a strike.

Speaking to Joy News the Deputy Minister of Transport Joyce Bawuah Mogtari said “the meeting has been called by the president to discuss the proposals being put on the table by the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission”.

She also said the ministry will meet with representatives of the Railway Workers Union and the entire staff of the railway department on 18 July to address their concerns.

The strike if undertaken will affect two passenger trains from Accra to Nsawam and Accra to Tema.

This year, the Polytechnic Teachers Association (POTAG), Nurses and Educational Workers, are among the many government workers who have organized protests to demand payment of wages and other allowances they believe is due them.

The workers say a staff salary review process meant to regularize their salary structure has not been effected despite directives from the President.

Earlier this week the General Secretary of the Railway Workers Union Godwill Ntarmah said at a press conference that workers in the sector continued to work under strenuous conditions due to the absence of tools, accessories and the spare parts needed to work effectively.

He stated that trackmen had to walk miles to inspect the lines and identify faulty areas because there are no rail cars to undertake those assignments.

However the deputy minister admitted to the deplorable state of infrastructure at the railway sector but was quick to add that Ministry of Transport “is trying to do is find a way to revamp and modernize the railway sector”.