The Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Mr Ignatius Baffour-Awuah, has asked workers not to use working hours to pray.
Avowing to be a Christian and not against prayers, he maintained, however, that even the word of God commanded Christians to give to Caesar what belonged to Caesar and to God what belonged to God.
Thus, the period of work belonged to employers, and employees did not have to use the time to pray and later complain when there was not enough to pass around.
Mr Baffour-Awuah said these when he gave his endorsement for a campaign initiated for Ghana to be on time by Punctuality Ghana, a registered non-governmental organisation, at a meeting in Accra last Tuesday.
Punctuality Ghana is advocating timeliness in work, service delivery and all aspects of life in the country.
In his statement, the minister said he fully endorsed the campaign as it was the “best initiative ever thought of for the transformation of the country.”
“You could not have given mother Ghana a better gift than this,” he told the campaigners.
He was of the view that indiscipline, particularly the disrespect for time, was the bane of the country.
Mr Baffour-Awuah said he would carry the message to his colleague ministers and also partners of the National Tripartite Committee, made up of employers, labour unions and the government.
He was of the view that time and productivity were intertwined and, therefore, not keeping to time meant a loss on productivity.
“Many a time, we negotiate as partners for salaries with no recourse to time,” he said and promised to convey the idea of timeliness to his constituents, that is labour unions, employers and the government.
He also disclosed that members of the tripartite committee had decided to use productivity as a key factor in the determination of salaries henceforth.
“Keeping to time is non-negotiable. Fortunately, time is free but limited, so one may not be able to fulfil his days if time is wasted,” he said.
He, therefore, urged workers not to waste work time but contribute meaningfully to the productiveness of the country and signed a pledge on punctuality.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Punctuality Ghana, Mr Emmanuel Amarquaye, in a presentation said road blocks, road obstruction, disorganisation and social media addictions were key issues that impacted negatively on time/punctuality and productiveness of the country.
He said from his observation, he had realised that Ghanaians hated delays, and that was why it was common these days to see ladies riding on an “okada”.
According to him, another observation he had made was that the concept of ‘Ghana man’s time’ was flawed because the same Ghanaians who were habitually late for work and other events would make it at dawn when it was an appointment for a visa or to see the President.
Mr Amarquaye also indicated that poor planning was a drain on the country and whittled away the resources needed for development.