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12.07.2004 General News

EC workers strike to demand 100% salary hike

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Accra, July 12, GNA - Angry workers of the Electoral Commission on Monday locked up all entrances to the premises as they carried out their threat to strike to back their demand for a 100 per cent salary increase.

The workers wearing red dresses and red bands sang war songs as they demonstrated their anger and frustration at their poor salaries and conditions of service.

They shouted: "No Provocation, No Confrontation"; "We No Go Sit Down Make Them Cheat Us Everyday"; "EC Workers Also Deserve Fair Share Of National Cake" and "The Kingmakers Deserve Better Remuneration."

Briefing the press, Mr Elvis Annan, Chairman of the EC Division of the Public Services Workers Union (PSWU) of the Trades Union Congress, listed poor salaries for all categories of staff, neglect of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, poor logistics and lack of motivation as bases for the strike action.

"Our action is also to tell the authorities that we are not happy about the undue delay in the payment of our fringe benefits and other entitlements due us."

These include day trip allowance, special overtime allowance for drivers, clothing, vehicle maintenance, tools allowances and special overtime for electoral exercises.

Mr Annan said: "The morale of workers is at its lowest ebb. In our view, therefore, this will not augur well for Election 2004. The image of our country would be dented.

"The Union is really concerned about the plight of workers and the seeming delay in implementing the newly signed Collective Bargaining Agreement between the EC Management and the Union."

He urged the Minister of Finance, PSWU and EC Management to end the uncertainty in the minds of workers.

Meanwhile, about 20 Police personnel have been deployed to the area.

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