Mr Bright Wireko-Brobby, Deputy Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, speaking at the Congress, said there was the need to review the law to address some lapses in it.
Mr Wireko-Brobby indicated that some employers were taking advantage of such loopholes in the law to exploit workers.
He noted for instance that jobs which used to be permanent jobs in private establishments were now being outsourced at the detriment of workers who did the same job but earned less with no benefits compared to their colleagues who had permanent status.
He added that some employers were also discouraging unionization of workers and were therefore intolerant to union activities as well as victimizing leaders of unions.
The Deputy Minister therefore stressed the need for organized labour to champion the call for the review of the law to address such issues in the sector adding that his outfit was ready to give them the needed support.
The Deputy Minister commended organized labour for its participation and cooperation with government on handling labour related issues since that had helped ‘ Ghana not to have recorded any major strike action for the year 2017 and 2018’.
He however added that “this does not mean the absence of agitations; however, in the spirit of dialogue and tripartism, proactive actions have been taken to address challenges before they escalate to strike actions”.
He stated that due to the cooperation of organized labour and employers, there existed a very peaceful labour front in Ghana which was important to the development and implementation of important policies and programmes which benefitted all.
Mr Kwasi Adu-Amankwah, General-Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC-Africa), urged governments to use unemployment as an index of measuring its success instead of only using inflation.
Mr Adu-Amankwah noted that most government policies were centered on micro economic growth and stability without paying attention to unemployment but the number of jobs that had been created.
“Our wellbeing should be at the heart of economic growth, unemployment should be a major index in measuring success”.
He reminded organized labour of the important role they have to play for the formulation of government economic and social policies and therefore charged them to be strong and unite to make the necessary impact.
Mr Abraham Koomson, Secretary General of the GFL, in a welcoming address, recounted the circumstances leading to the formation of the GFL, its aims and vision.
Mr Koomson called for collaboration among unions as the work of labour movements was not an easy task and therefore there was the need to be guided by the principle of workers’ solidarity, unity in diversity, and positive social dialogue.
He appealed to the Ghana Trades Union Congress (TUC) to allocate the GFL an office at its premises to enhance effective collaboration among the unions.
There were solidarity messages from the TUC, National Labour Commission, and the Ghana Employers Association.