MELPWU demands conditions of service, threatens strike
The Medical Laboratory Professionals Workers Union (MELPWU) is demanding conditions of service for medical laboratory workers in Ghana as it threatens to embark on an industrial action over the issue.
According to the union, which joined the May Day parade in Bolgatanga for the first time, it would soon advise itself if the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) continues to ignore its request to negotiate the Conditions of Service.
In a statement to mark International Workers Day, the General Secretary of MELPWU, Cephas Kofi Akortor, said “we are not enthused by the Commission’s half-hearted approach to our formal requests and proposals submitted for negotiations of our Conditions of Service, as our right under the Labour Act, 2003 (Act 651).”
In view of lack of response contrary to provisions of the Labour Act, the Union has formally reported the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission to the National Labour Commission in line with Section 104 of the Labour Act, 2003 (Act 651) for the necessary actions, the statement said.
“We shall continue to use the laid down channels, but as a Union, which bears the concerns and increasing frustrations of medical laboratory professionals in the country, we appear to be running out of patience and we will advise ourselves. Our Collective Bargaining Certificate is not complete unless it is supported by our Conditions of Service,” he said.
He said “As essential service providers, we have sacrificed over the years and we will continue to sacrifice to serve our clients and the nation, but we will not allow our Conditions of Service and other legitimate benefits due us as workers to be sacrificed for anything.”
MELPWU, which is joining the May Day parade for the first time after becoming an independent union, pledged that professional laboratory workers would continue to deliver on their mandate to sustain and enhance quality health care delivery in the country.
“As we pledge on our honour, we urge the employer, being the government to also deliver on its responsibilities and provide the necessary working tools and conditions for us to work more effectively and productively,” he said.
The union which broke away from the Health Services Workers Union to become an independent body to represent the interests of over 5,000 medical laboratory professionals, described its involvement in the May Day parade as a milestone in highlighting the contributions of medical laboratory professionals and the need for their improved conditions of service.
“We consider our involvement in the celebration as a milestone in our struggle to secure the wellbeing for our teeming members in the health sector,” the union said, and assured the membership of continuous effort to secure the best working conditions to protect their welfare, and enable them to enhance their performance,” he said.
Scores of members of MELPWU joined the national May Day parade in Bolgatanga and the regional parades across the country.
Some of the placards held by the workers read; “Be fair to medical laboratory professionals,” “Give us Conditions of Service,” “Give financial clearance to unemployed Medical Lab graduates and IGF staff working the lab.”
BY TIMES REPORTER