Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Labour Protests: WANEP Warns of Revolution in Ghana
Workers protests in Ghana are escalating.
The West Africa Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP) is warning of a revolution in Ghana if government fails to address the growing workers agitations and protests across the country.

While the revolution may not take the form of the Arab Spring, Coordinator of the Network, Isaac Bayor told Joy News the powers that be must not underestimate the widespread agitations in the country.

Ghana has been hit by a wave of demonstration with workers grumbling over worsening standards of living.

Fuel price hikes, utility price hikes, depreciating currency with a relatively static wages have conspired to increase the cost of living.

Prices of goods and services, transport fares have also gone up in the last six months, a situation workers insist has made life unbearable for them.

On Friday, the Trades Union Congress, the umbrella body of workers unions in Ghana, announced a one-day sit-down strike on Thursday July 24, 2014 to protest the worsening living conditions.

Even before that demonstration on Thursday, workers of the Industrial Commercial Union hit the streets on Monday to protest "government's bad economic policies."

Radio programmes have been inundated with calls about workers' suffering and the need for government to address the high cost of living.

WANEP issued a statement predicting a revolution in Ghana if steps were not taken to address the grievances of the workers.

Speaking to Joy News, the Coordinator of WANEP, Isaac Bayor said government must not take these demonstrations lightly because they have the potential of escalating into something else.

When asked how the strings of demonstrations could lead to a revolution similar to the Arab Spring, the Coordinator said "we are not nearer to the Arab spring" but "when these issues are not addressed properly people become rebellious."

Isaac Bayor added that elements who may have other aspirations could infiltrate these demonstrations to cause mayhem in the country.

While admonishing the workers embarking on the strikes and demonstrations to be law abiding, he added the duty bearers must quickly pay attention to the workers, dialogue with them with the view of resolving their grievances.

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