Local government workers have threatened to strike if their request to have their salaries enhanced in the coming financial year is not prioritised.

In letter dated January 19, 2023 written to the public service minster, Muruli Mukasa, the Uganda Local Government Workers Union (ULGWU) general secretary, Hassan Mudiba, demanded that the union’s request to enhance the workers’ salaries be made a priority in the forthcoming budget for the new financial year.

The Union accused the Government for failing to honor the 2018 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) in which it pledged to increase salaries for all public servants.

Mudiba warned that the strike will commence a day after the new budget is released as long as money for their enhancement is not included.

Mudiba accused the Government of a discriminative pay policy where science workers are paid more than their arts counterparts, saying the economy affects all of them equally.

The union has since demanded that the lowest level local government worker earns sh1m while chief administrative officers sh1m.

It should be noted that the Union through its general secretary petitioned Parliament to intervene in their pursuit for better working conditions including salary enhancement in February 2021.

While presenting the petition to the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga, Mudiba said the Government had failed to respect the Collective Bargaining Agreement it had signed with the Union and other Public Service Labour Unions in June 2018.

The Union members have been subjected to very low pay; lack of accommodation and transport; no medical care facilities. The micro finance institutions have stringent terms on loans and the banks give loans at a higher percentage which leads to officials getting multiple loans and eventually to perpetual poverty,” Mudiba said while presenting the petition in Parliament.

He added that the Government has continued to discriminate public officials in terms of pay between the scientists and non-scientists.

The scientists are considered more important and their pay is more yet both were appointed as public officers. There should be set parameters between the two so as to stop the issues of discrimination since there is no economy the world over which has developed because the efforts of scientists only,” he said.

The CBA which was signed by both the Government of Uganda and the local government workers’ union had among other things agreements on improving local government workers’ conditions including salary enhancement.

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