Health Minister Kwaku Agyemang-Manu has suggested he is overwhelmed by the rate of picketing, which has become the willpower of health professionals and students under his ministry in pushing through their demands.
Picketing has in recent times assumed an alarming rate in the country, and appears to be the tool which workers and students use in getting government to resolve their grievances usually bothering on conditions of service and employment.
The latest picketing Tuesday by Allied Health Professionals from College of Health in Kintampo of the Brong Ahafo region caused Mr. Agyemang-Manu to speak against such practice that has gained roots in Ghana.
“From January to now, almost every two weeks, there is a group amongst you guys who come to do what you’re doing .If you were me, by now you would have said I can’t do nothing again but I haven’t adopted that approach at all,” Mr Agyemang-Manu told the picketing students.
The allied health professionals who have completed their training are demanding the government employs them to work in health facilities across the country, something the Health Ministry says it cannot do without financial clearance from the Finance Ministry.
“The thing that you’re doing here will not help you, will not help me. Now, I don’t know what to do,” Mr. Agyemang-Manu said in apparent frustration.
For him, the Akufo-Addo-led government has since assuming office in January 2017 been trying its best to clear the areas of unemployed health professionals, noting it has so far employed 16,000 people in the sector.
He wondered why some of the agitating health professionals have managed to stay at home for about five years under the previous administration yet have suddenly risen up against the government to employ them.
“All of a sudden, those of us who have come and have recruited 16,000 and we’re on the way still recruiting and clearing arrears, we are the people you are picketing against,” he observed.
He added: Me, what you do will be in front of you in your own future. When you grow up and your kids come with cutlasses on you to demand money that is when you will remember what you did to the health minister. You’re not being fair to me at all”.
He has thus pleaded with professionals and students under his Ministry who may have concerns with government to “please hesitate a bit and have restraint; cool down tempers”.
Mr. Agyemang-Man advised that picketing wouldn’t resolve whatever grievances they may have with government hence they should adopt dialogue and laid down structures.
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