RESOLUTION PASSED BY THE NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COUNCIL OF THE GHANA MINEWORKERS’ UNION OF TUC ON DECEMBER 10, 2010 AT OBUASI
The National Executive Council of the Ghana Mineworkers’ Union of GTUC at its National Executive Council meeting held at AngloGold Ashanti, Obuasi from December 9 - 10, 2010, after careful consideration of issues of importance to the nation, the mining industry and labour do hereby resolve as follows:
- Considering the numerous unresolved cases of industrial disputes before the National Labor Commission over a period of three years, we reiterate our call on the Commission to expedite action on those cases. By this we enjoin the GTUC to ensure that the Labour Commission deals with those disputes and also call on government to adequately resource the commission to perform effectively.
- GMWU expresses regret that terminal benefits paid to retirees are taxed. The Union further detests tax on incomes such as rent and leave travelling allowances. These critical incomes must be tax exempt.
- GMWU recognizes the improvement in safety standards in the mining industry over the last 15 years but stresses the need to avoid complacency considering the recent Chilean and New Zealand mining accidents and its associated death toll. We therefore reiterate our call on government to consider the ratification of ILO Convention 176 which deals with safety and health in mines in order to ensure a tripartite interaction at various mines and to address any inherent deficit in the existing mining regulations.
- GMWU views the critical skills shortage in the mining industry worldwide as important and calls for a swifter response in dealing with the industry’s human capital Deficit at an accelerated pace. This is to be backed by an internationally competitive remuneration strategy that will serve as a retention tool.
- The Vice President’s statement that businesses cannot be proud of their successes at the expense of poor environmental management should be seriously deliberated and acted upon by businesses.
- Drawing on the recent Danish report, The GMWU expects government to be strict on the financial reports produced by international businesses in Ghana for the purposes of taxation.
- GMWU further supports the call by the Western Regional House of Chiefs for a 10% stake in oil receipts and stresses that cognisance must be taken of the infrastructural deficit in the mining economies in spite of more than hundred years of mining in Ghana. The lack of planned developmental agenda that has seriously affected towns like Akwatia, Prestea, Bibiani, Tarkwa, among others make the call by the Chiefs imperative.
- GMWU reiterates its position on the poor state of roads in important mining areas such as Tarkwa, Bogoso and Obuasi and calls on the government to initiate a comprehensive infrastructural growth agenda to deal with the situation. Stakeholders’ engagement will be appropriate to foster commitment and ownership.
- That GMWU strongly believes in the consolidation of resources by the mining companies operating in Ghana to produce a strong financial muscle to showcase sustainable projects in the mining economies.
- GMWU still shares the view that mining companies and other extractive industries must be made to pay special windfall taxes when commodity prices reach unprecedented peak in any given period. The current gold price behavior attests to this. Revenue generated from this could be used as a source of revenue to address the infrastructural deficit in the mining economies.
- The GMWU calls for deepening discussions between the Environmental Protection Agency and captains of industry on the grading and/or scores of both the manufacturing and mining sectors to ensure an improved situation in the next assessment period.