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A groundbreaking collective agreement for the public sector in Uganda

A collective agreement covering almost all public sector employees in Uganda is one of the largest achievements of the trade unions in the country

“Previously, there has never been a collective agreement for the public sector employees. It is a huge victory both to attain a collective agreement and to get the government to accept the trade union organisation,” says Peter Christopher Werikhe, secretary-general for NOTU (National Organisation of Trade Unions), who has negotiated and settled the collective agreement.

Huge pay hike

350.000 public employees – doctors, nurses, schoolteachers, police officers, prison officers, and local authority workers – are as part of the new collective agreement guaranteeing salary increases of 225 percent within the next five years.

“We were aware that we were unable to achieve such a large salary increase in just a single year, so that is why we have entered into a five-year agreement. However, with salary increases every year,” explains Peter Christopher Werikhe.

As a result, the wage for a police officer will be hiked from today’s USD 45 a month to USD 240 in 2023.

May affect the whole labour market

Not only the public sector will benefit from the CBA. The agreement might influence the whole labour market and the informal economy.

The DTDA has supported NOTU with development of strategies, e.g. workshops in lobbying and advocacy.