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Condition of service Govt, Doctors back to negotiations table

The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has called off its strike

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GMA President Dr. Kwabena Opoku Adusei with Employment and Labour Minister, Haruna Iddrisu play

GMA President Dr. Kwabena Opoku Adusei with Employment and Labour Minister, Haruna Iddrisu

Negotiations for conditions of service for public-sector doctors and other health professionals are expected to resume at the Ministry of Finance today.

Employment and Labour Relations Minister, Mr Haruna Iddrisu, and the President of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA), Dr Kwabena Opoku-Adusei, confirmed the resumption of negotiations in separate interviews with the Daily Graphic yesterday.

Mr Iddrisu and Dr Opoku-Adusei agreed that the negotiations should be conducted in good faith, without recourse to past weeks’ incidents during which acrimony and mistrust took centre stage in the negotiations.

Mr Iddrisu said the government was committed to discussions that would result in the codification of conditions of service for public-sector doctors and all health professionals.

According to him, the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission (FWSC) had already invited all the stakeholders to ensure the resumption of negotiations.

He urged all the stakeholders, including the government team, to negotiate in good faith and ensure that they were moderate in their demands,considering the state of the economy.

Strike called off

The GMA, therefore, appealed to all its members to restore full service on the said date.

A press release issued at the end of an emergency meeting of the National Executive Council (NEC) of the GMA in Accra yesterday signed by both its President, Dr Kwabena Opoku-Adusei, and the General Secretary, Dr Frank Serebour, however, said negotiations on their conditions of service would continue.

Employment and Labour Relations minister Haruna Iddrisu has indicated that the government has rescinded its decision to suspend the salaries since the doctors have called off their strike to allow negotiations to take place.

“When you are building bridges you need to change your posture,” Iddrisu told Accra-based Joy FM. “I don’t think any medical practitioner will suffer as a result of the action they embarked upon.”

“Where it is necessary and compelling we have no hesitation in enforcing it,” the minister said in reaction to why teachers’ salaries were frozen for embarking on a similar action.

He said “I do not think that any medical practitioner will suffer as a result of the action that was embarked upon, the consequence, regrettable as it may be.”

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