Franklin Cudjoe - IMANI Ghana
Posted on: www.dailyguideghana.com
By William Yaw Owusu
Monday, December 23, 2013
Founding President & CEO of IMANI Ghana, Franklin Cudjoe has announced his resignation from the government’s committee on the sustainability of the Single Spine Pay Policy (SSPP).
He cited “needless intervention” from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning on the committee’s work as his reason to quit.
In recent times, Mr. Cudjoe has been very vocal in his criticism of the government’s handling of the economy and other related government business especially the fight against corruption, a move that has ruffled the feathers of the government’s communication machinery who often respond to him in a likewise manner and tag him as an apologist of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP).
Mr. Cudjoe, who has contributed significantly in shaping the country’s pension reforms, sent his resignation to the committee copied to its chairman Paul Victor Obeng, Minister of Employment and Labour Relations Nii Armah Ashittey and the CEO, Fair Wages and Salaries Commission George Smith-Graham.
He said in the release: “I have taken this decision in the best interest of my personal convictions that whilst unfettered power is recipe for absolutism, all checks and balances within government must be orderly especially when professional jealousy, integrity and one’s ability to execute mandates are at stake.”
He said that he was invited by the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations to be a member of the 16-man committee following the successful National Forum on Single Spine Pay Policy held in Ho in August adding “I believe my invitation was due in part to the pre-implementation analysis of the predictable repercussions my think tank, IMANI did on the wholesale implementation of the pay policy.”
Mr. Cudjoe said that the terms of reference for the Post-Forum Implementation Committee on the SSP) were hinged on ‘’sustainability of the pay policy” and added that An important resolution reached at the National Forum on Single pine Pay Policy in Ho in August 2013, was that “Subvented agencies (of government) which can be on their own should be identified and weaned off government subvention without delay”
He said currently, there were over 130 of such agencies and counting and together with the CEO of the FWSC, the Lawyer for the Commission, two senior representatives of the Public Sector Reform, and a senior representative of the Ghana Employers Association, “we had began meeting the subvented agencies who were eager to discuss the modalities for a phased parting from government’s payroll.”
He said the subcommittee had started meeting and engaging the Driver & Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA), Forestry Commission, Food and Drugs Authority, Security and Exchange Commission, Vice-Chancellors, Polytechnics, Standards Authority, Environmental Protection Agency, Korle Bu and Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospitals among others.
Mr. Cudjoe said “unfortunately, the subcommittee has been asked by the Finance Ministry as communicated to the CEO of the FWSC that we stop our meetings until further directives are issued.”
“It may be possible that the Finance Ministry is concerned about compensation, possible retrenchment and unemployment that may result from the sub-committee’s work. However, we had our work cut out as we were guided by the Subvented Agencies Act, Act 706 and in particular by the urgency of reducing the wage bill.”
“I consider this intervention as needless; a usurpation of the authority of the Ministry of Employment Labour Relations, will crucially affect the successful completion of the sub-committee’s work and ultimately delay the much needed reforms to reduce the burden of the public workforce on the wage bill.”
He thanked P.V. Obeng, the Ministers of Employment and Labour Relations, Finance Ministry, the CEO and Staff of the FWSC and fellow Committee Members for their support and wished them success in the years ahead.
Nevertheless, Mr Cudjoe offered some tips to the government for a successful rationalization of wages and salaries to meet national productivity requirements that aligns with policy reforms that are urgently needed.
They include a total skills rationalization needed within the public service since he says the findings that 75% of all public sector workers are classified as semi-skilled and unskilled “is worrying.”