The Chief Executive Officer of the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission, George Smith Graham has described as “dangerous” the position of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) on the negotiations for their conditions of service.
Reports indicate that negotiations between the doctors who have been on strike for nearly two weeks and the government have broken down.
Government’s attempts to get the doctors to return to work have failed to yield positive results .
[contextly_sidebar id=”rOaIPHHBuGtxXLIMeLBJc3LK1zqWPkrC”]Speaking on the Citi Breakfast Show on Monday Mr. Smith Graham who is leading government’s negotiating team explained that government is yet to implement category 2 and 3 allowances of the single spine salary structure which will subsequently address the demands by the doctors.
He said though the negotiation is still ongoing with Public Services Joint Standing Negotiating Committee (PSJSNC), have not gotten to a point where they have to engage the GMA.
“…In January this year, in our negotiations, we indicated that we necessarily will have to implement the categories 2 and 3 allowances and we given ourselves some timelines to be able to able to work on it. That is the spirit we are all doing these negotiations and when we work within this environment, anything that you are looking for, whether you are a medical officer or any other profession, you will get it within the pointers of the public services during the joint standing negotiations committee.”
He noted that under category 2 and 3, only specific issues will be discussed adding that “…those that are unique to the health sector will be negotiated within the health service classification. Even within the health service classification, if there is anything unique to medical officers, it will be negotiated with the doctors.”
Mr. Graham lamented that “the situation we are having currently is that they [doctors] are saying that they will not negotiate within any of these umbrellas, [saying that they want to] sit down with us alone and negotiate, and that is a very dangerous thing for us to do at this moment and time of implementation of the policy.”
The striking doctors have already withdrawn their emergency and out-patient department services after government failed to meet their demands.
By: Godwin A. Allotey/citifmonline.com/Ghana