There is fierce resistance from labour unions and civil society organisations regarding the adjustment of emoluments and privileges of Article 71 officeholders at an ongoing conference by the Presidential Committee on Emoluments.

Article 71 is an entrenched provision in the 1992 Constitution, and as such, has very strict rules relating to its removal and cancellation. However, it can be amended.

The ongoing engagement is for the Presidential Committee on Emoluments to collate the views of stakeholders and make recommendations to the President for consideration.

However, the labour force and CSOs have argued that the timing is bad.

According to them, the current economic situation in the country will not be conducive to an adjustment.

“The major problem is the timing. As I am speaking with you, I was a member of the 7th Parliament. The 8th Parliament are taking the salaries of the 7th Parliament members.

“So those in Parliament today don’t know how much they will get or how much they are supposed to be paid as Members of Parliament.

“If a President assumes office, the first thing is a committee should be put in place so that the person knows that as a member of parliament, I am going to receive this amount of money.

“But not after the person has exited, then we will do the calculation for four years. And an additional three months or four months is added to it, and the person is being paid and we say it’s four years.”

Some top former government appointees also shared their ordeals about outstanding arrears.

Meanwhile, MMDCEs also have issues with the classification of their appointment.

One of them is Ransford Nyarko, who was a DCE from 2017 to 2021 told the gathering that “we don’t know our fate, whether we are Article 71 officeholders or not.”

He lamented the fact that they remain on salaries dating as far back as 2017 which is worrying amid inflation among other devaluation dynamics.

“You can imagine, 7 years down the line with all the inflation, exchange rate and everything, you are still down there. Plus a 30% salary cut, so what is happening to us I think that the commission must bring some closure to the office of the MMDCEs as far as our salaries are concerned as to whether we are Article 71 officeholders or not.”

The committee generally acknowledged the issue of timing which came up strongly during the sitting.

However, the Chairperson of the Presidential Emoluments Committee, Dr Janet Ampadu Fofie says they will forward the concerns to the President to ensure that strides are made in this regard.


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