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30.11.2004 General News

CSIR embarks on industrial action

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Fumesua (Ash), Nov 30, GNA - Unionised and senior staff organizations under the umbrella of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) have embarked on a two-day industrial action to demand equity and parity in salaries of the organizations and the country's universities.

The industrial action, which begun on November 29, affects all the 13 scientific organizations under the CSIR in the country. The organisations are the Forestry Research Institute of Ghana, Building and Road Research Institute, Soil Research Institute, Crops Research Institute, Water Research Institute, Industrial Research Institute, Animal Research Institute, Oil Palm Research Institute and the Savannah Agriculture Research station.

The rest are the Food Research Institute, Institute for Scientific and Technology Information, the CSIR secretariat and the Science and Technology Policy Research Institute

Mr Moses Addo Akyea, Chairman of the Central Committee of the CSIR Local Unions, said at a press conference on Monday that the 5,000 workers would continue the industrial action if nothing positive was heard after the deadline of November ending.

He explained that they had no option than to embark on the industrial action since a lot of correspondence and reminders had been sent to the government on the recommendation of the Gyampoh Commission on review of salaries on ensuring parity between salaries of the CSIR organizations and the Universities.

He said a government white paper was issued on the recommendations of the Gyampoh Commission report on November 5, 1993, which recommended parity of salaries between the scientific organisations of the CSIR and the universities, "yet the universities continued to receive much higher salaries than the scientific organizations of CSIR".

Mr Akyea said on July 7, 2004 management of CSIR sent a memorandum to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning reminding them of the parity with the universities as recommended by the Gyampoh Commission. He said the reminder notwithstanding the government, through the Ministry of Finance on September 20 this year, offered CSIR a paltry 10 percent salary increase, while its counterparts at the universities were given a juicy 30 percent consolidation into their basic salaries. Mr. Akyea said this was followed with a 15 percent increase again in favour of the universities.

He said the unions and the Senior Staff Association consider the offer of 10 percent increase a "humiliation".

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