GNAT praised gov’t for excluding pension funds but demands 8-month arrears

The Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) has expressed gratitude to the government for heeding to calls by its members, and, indeed, workers as a whole to exempt pension funds from the Domestic Debt Exchange (DDE) Programme.

General Secretary Thomas Musah Tanko, however, said payment of pensions as deducted from the Controller and Accountant General’s Department (CAGD) is in arrears for eight months and so government must ensure that the arrears are settled.

“We want to say we are grateful,” he said in an interview with TV3‘s Daniel Opoku on Friday, December 23.

“We are grateful that government has exempted the pension funds from this particular arrangement. We think that is the way to go and we need to commend government.

“As we commend government, government should also take the necessary steps that all the outstanding arrears on the pension remittances are paid to the scheme because consistently we are being given a 3 percent haircut every month and if care is not taken, it will go a long way to affect the investment workers are making and how much the will take home when they are 60 years old.”

After a crunch meeting with Organised Labour on Thursday, December 22, government announced the exemption of pension funds from the soon-to-be-rolled-out Debt Exchange Programme.

Workers had agitated against the inclusion of their pension funds, threatening to embark on an indefinite strike from Tuesday, December 27.

However, the decision on Thursday effectively stalled the intention to strike.