Leave your office and return to the ward; angry Labour tells Minister

The ongoing controversy over the tier two pension scheme has degenerated into a bitter war of words between government officials on one hand and leaders of public sector workers on another.

The Deputy General Secretary of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) Dr. Justice Yankson, has challenged the Communications Minister, Edward Omane Boamah to leave his ministerial office and return to the ward if he feels doctors are not doing their jobs properly.

The minister, who is also a medical doctor, is reported to have said it is unconscionable on the part of health workers to look on or even turn patients away to die or suffer from complications as a result of the strike.

He is also reported to have said that it is unconscionable for teachers to deprive students contact hours in school all in the name of a strike over tier two pension scheme.

Twelve labour unions have been on strike a little over a week in protest over government’s handling of the tier two pension scheme.

But the striking workers appear to have been angered by the Communications Minister’s comment.

Speaking to Joy News, Dr. Justice Yankson said if there is anything unconscionable about the strike, then government has to be blamed for it.

He said it is unconscionable for government to have allowed the situation to have degenerated the way it has.

He also described as untrue, allegations that doctors are turning away pregnant women and children, challenging government officials to “stop throwing dust in the eyes of the public.”

Dr. Yankson said they have remained true to the promise of taking care of emergency cases.

The workers do not understand why government is imposing, on them, a fund manager- Pensions Alliance Trust [PAT]- to manage their tier two pensions fund.

Dr. Yankson said the Bank of Ghana cannot be allowed to select their own fund managers only for government to turn around to impose PAT on other public sector workers who also have a right to select their own fund manager.

On Friday, government secured an ex-parte order to have the workers to call off the strike and return to work.

But the workers say they have not received any communication from the court, except the news they read on the internet and listen to on radio.

He said until they receive a copy of the court order, the strike will go on unabated.

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