Bongo (UE), May 1, GNA – Mr Kofi Asamoah, General   Secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) on Tuesday expressed worry about the unemployment situation in the country and called on government to create decent jobs for the citizenry.

He noted that the country had registered the highest level of economic growth in the country’s history and said available data indicated that the country had achieved the longest period of macro-economic stability in its recent economic history.

He was quick to state that the unprecedented growth rates had failed to create decent jobs for Ghanaians, as unemployment was on the rise.

Mr Asamoah disclosed this in a speech read on his behalf by Mr Augustine Adongo Apambila, Regional Secretary of the Union during this year’s Regional May Day celebrations at Bongo in the upper East Region.

The celebration which was under the theme, “Election 2012: The role of workers in securing peaceful and fair elections”, witnessed workers clad in various union tee shirts with placards with inscriptions “we want peace before, during and after elections 2012”, “Ghana post board members must go”, “we demand early payment of salaries”, and “implement 20 percent salary increment for CLOSAG members”, amongst others.

Mr Asamoah said nearly all new jobs being created in the informal economy, where incomes were low and workers had very little protection from the country’s labour laws.

“The vast majority of young women and men coming out of our universities and other tertiary institutions cannot find decent jobs”

He further stated that high economic growth had failed to create employment and said the country’s growth policy had been based on the exploitation of natural resources which did not create adequate jobs.

Mr Asamoah expressed dismay about the inability of policy makers to address the monumental challenges that confront the domestic industry compelling many manufacturing firms to convert their factories into warehouses as they join the lucrative import trade.

Joblessness among the youth, he said, constituted the biggest challenge to national peace and development, saying that the surest way of improving the living conditions of people was to ensure that economic growth and its associated macroeconomic stability translated into the creation of good quality jobs for the people.

“Employment-generating growth is the only sustainable way to stem poverty, social exclusion and foster inclusive development”.

Mr Mark Owen Woyongo, delivering his May Day address, indicated that the theme for the celebrations was timely because peaceful, fair and successful elections could not happen in a nation without the active contribution and involvement of workers at each stage of the electioneering process.

He added that the role of workers to secure peaceful and fair elections was crucial and couldn’t be compromised, in the light of recent skirmishes witnessed during the ongoing biometric registration exercise.

He reiterated government’s commitment to ensuring that workers were remunerated accordingly and said government would implement the payment of the 18 percent increase in salaries.

GNA

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