Mortuary Workers Association of Ghana raise red flag

The Mortuary Workers Association of Ghana (MOWAG) has hinted of the possibility of embarking upon a strike to compel the Labour Department to release their Collective Bargaining Certificate.

The General Secretary of the Association, Mr Richard Kofi Jordan, dropped the hint in an interview with the Ghanaian Times here on Saturday on the side-lines of the launch of the Medical Laboratory Professional Workers Union.

He said his outfit obtained a Collective Bargaining Certificate issued by the Labour Department in 2019, but claimed it  was later withdrawn by the department under the pretext that it was wrongfully issued when the Association embarked on a strike action.

“On what basis was the bargaining certificate issued, why the certificate was taken from us when we went on strike. Even taking away the certificate does not stop us from striking”, the General Secretary stressed.

When the Ghanaian Times probed further on what the Association intended to do if their bargaining certificate was not issued, the General Secretary emphasised: “When we lock all mortuaries we will see whether they will issue the certificate or not. We are preparing for a very serious action, you will hear from us very soon.”

He stated that the certificate gave them the right to bargain with the employer and indicated that that right was taken away from them illegally.

Mr Jordan stated that theAssociation recently had discussions with the Labour Department to have the certificate released, but there seemed to be no light at the end of the tunnel, adding that unlike the other health staff who were highly respected and recognised by the government and other stakeholders his outfit was not respected at all.

He cited for instance, that the government under COVID-19 gave allowances to many members of the Associations of the Ghana Health Service, but denied that of the MOWAG.

He added that unlike the other health workers of the Ghana Health Service, MOWAG had the herculean tasks to perform looking at how they are exposed to all kinds of diseases at the mortuaries stressing“many of our members stand the high risks of being infected by diseases”.           

Mr Jordan disclosed that the Association had lost 16 members within one year within the period of the COVID-19, saying that the members of the Association never benefited from the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

The General Secretary expressed regret over the neglect of the provision of PPE to the mortuary attendants, whom, he said, were exposed to all forms of diseases at the mortuaries.

FROM SAMUEL AKAPULE, BOLGATANGA

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