Ghana’s COVID-19 Frontline Workers Hugely Disappointed as Government’s 50% Salary Increment Fails to Materialize

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The President of Ghana-Nana Akufo Addo announced on Sunday 06 April 2020 that starting from April 2020, Ghanaian COVID-19 frontline workers such as healthcare professionals will receive 3 months’ tax break—and 50% increment in their basic salary.

However, several healthcare professionals who have received their payslips and salary alerts have expressed their disappointment to Africawish as the expected increment did not materialize.

While some of the healthcare professionals say the tax break has reflected on their take-home, a nurse said taxes were deducted from her April salary as usual.

A young Ghanaian nurse, Vivian, told Africawish that she is disappointed that the increment did not reflect this April as was announced by the President.

Another nurse, Gifty, who said she is also disappointed added that “I knew it wasn’t coming due to the controversy surrounding who is and who is not a frontline worker.”

Yvonne, another nurse, said she is not only disappointed in the fact that the salary increment did not reflect as was announced, the district she works in lacks PPEs—and that is really sad.

Samuel, a nurse is completely sceptical as he said he doesn’t think the increment will happen “because our leaders are not to be trusted especially those into politics.”

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Even though the president stated emphatically that the salary increment and the tax break was to start from April 2020, pockets of information from government sources say further stakeholder consultation and compilation of the list of qualifying frontline workers is still going on—the reason why April has not seen the increment.

Closely related to this, two weeks ago, President Akufo-Addo also announced that as part of measures to combat the economic effects of the lockdown, the government was going to absorb 50% of electricity costs for consumers who use over 50 kWh every month.

Immediately the announcement went out, users of prepaid electricity started wondering whether they would be part of the measure and how it would be implemented if they are.

That initial confusion has persisted till date, despite a press conference by the government about a week later clarifying the measure announced by the President.

Despite the President announcing that the discount would take effect in April, May and June, it was later postponed to May, June and July.

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