Courts to shutdown as workers threaten strike over salary demands

Courts to shutdown as workers threaten strike over salary demands

Ahead of the 2020 budget, Judicial workers are calling for an upward review of their salaries, threatening a sit-down strike should the government fail to accede to their demand.

According to the workers, their action is preemptive, as intelligence picked from the government sources suggests that government is seeking to sidestep a proposal on their salaries, which was submitted to the Finance Ministry for inclusion in the 2020 budget statement.

The Finance Ministry, they claimed, rather wants to implement the said proposal agreed upon between them and the Judicial Council, in 2021 instead of 2020. 

“The Association vehemently disagrees with the position taken by Government,” the workers who form the Judicial Staff Association of Ghana (JUSAG) said in a letter to the National Labour Commission dated November 1, 3news has reported. 

They have thus served notice to embark on strike from November 13.

Prior to that, the workers say they “shall put on red-arm bands and hoist red flags in the courts, nationwide” from November 5.

The workers said their current salary was implemented in 2017 and it was to be renewed bi-annually.

“However, in the year 2017, the Ministry of Finance sought to cancel the payment of rent allowance to our members and after several protests, the Judicial Council, Government and the Association resolved the issue in 2018 and for implementation in the year 2019,” they claimed.

According to them, they wrote for the salary negotiations on April 26, 2019, and subsequently served a reminder on July 29, 2019.

“On 1st October 2019, the Judicial Council mandated to review our salaries and other salary-related matters under the 1992 Constitution, set up a committee and considered the proposals of the Association, they said.   

The workers said it was resolved that the decisions of the meeting will be forwarded to the Presidency for approval and same captured in the National Budget for the year 2020.

“It has, however, come to our attention that Ministry of Finance has rather slated our salary review for the year 2020 and for implementation in year 2021,” they alleged. 

This, the workers say, they will not agree to for which reason they have served notice to strike from next week on Wednesday.