The Union of Professional Nurses and Midwives, Ghana (UPNMG) has joined the list of pressure unions to demand Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) from the government.
The union’s demand comes barely 72 hours after 4 Teacher Unions, NAGRAT, GNAT, TEWU and CCT-GH laid down their tools until a paramount consensus is reached by the Govt over COLA.
The UPNMG is demanding that the 4 and 7% paid them in 2010 and 2014 does not complement the current rate of economic hardships in the country.
According to the Deputy Secretary General for the UPNMG, Thomas Nfi, while speaking to Kwame Koranteng on Republic FM, Wednesday, July 6, it would be very necessary for the government to cushion the nurses and midwives to be able to allow them buy from the market.
The UPNMG says it is not looking for another salary agreement. It says, it is demanding the COLA to shore up their financial situation because the current economic challenges has reduced their salaries.
“This cost of living allowance we are talking about, it’s not as if we are demanding for a new salary structure, no. In time past, we go to market and we could buy fuel of Gh5 and we could use it for days but today, you cannot use Gh20 fuel for a day.
What this means is that our salary has been reduced. Our wives used to go to market market and buy basic things with say Gh50 and today they can’t buy anything with Gh100, it means nurses and midwives are disadvantaged so we are calling on the government that we in our opinion every worker need some but in case there are some that do not need, that’s fine”.
The group says it prompted the government of its demand of COLA in Sunyani on 19 to 26th last month during its National Council meeting.
“We had started this. From 19th to 26th we were in Sunyani for our National Council Meeting and we told the government that Nurses and Midwives are now forced to run from the country as if there is fire blazing in the whole country. It is because our conditions of services are very poor. So we are pleading with the government that increase our ability to buy from the market. Cost of living has gone up, Mr. President, managers of the economy, increase our ability to buy”, he told Kwame Koranteng on Anɔpa Dawuro.
Obviously, the UPNMG is agitating that it will embark on an indefinite strike should the government fails to heed to their calls.