With the rapid invasion of Artificial Intelligence (AI) on the job market, resulting in job losses, workers in Ghana have been urged to swiftly upgrade their knowledge and skills to be able to survive the invasion.
That is because as machines and technology take over the routine and manual jobs, only innovative and specially skilled workers would be engaged by employers.
“The time is drawing near when AI would take over from manual workers, and it is up to the workers to fight for their sustainability by exploring for new skills and areas of investment that can keep them in work,” says Mr. Abdul Moomin Gbana, Deputy General Secretary of the Ghana Mine Workers Union (GMWU).
In an interview with ADR Daily, he said although AI has become detrimental to job security, workers have no option than to take advantage of the rapidly changing technology in the world of work to diversify and enhance their skills.
He explained that “the onset of AI, also referred to as automation and robotisation, has caused many workers in many countries especially in Europe and America to lose their jobs.
However, he said the same new technology advancement continues to create new jobs, which workers must be prepared to explore.
“Therefore in the Ghanaian economy with the new technology on the horizon, unions have to train their workers and equip them with more skills and make them more innovative so that even with the adoption of the new technology they may not lose their jobs,” he added.
Mr Gbana said although “the adoption of AI would affect union density, if workers are to upgrade themselves they would surely find jobs from the newly created employment avenues that the AI systems would bring.”
He explained that sectors like banking and manufacturing are likely to be dominated by AI. However, sectors like agriculture and mining would remain untouched, saying “it is these sectors that employment avenues can be created.”
He advised unions and workers to analyze the aspects of the economy which AI would dominate because in the western countries AI in the agricultural sector is non-existent as such workers should move towards agriculture for employment.
“It is advisable that government and employers create employment avenues in sectors that would hardly be affected by AI to guarantee job security for workers,” he added.
“One thing we must note for sure is that permanent employment would be a thing of the past. And with more workers employed on contract basis, job security is virtually non-existent, because the labour law does not provide enough safety nets when the employer decides to terminate their contracts.
“And with contract basis, there would be no need for workers to join unions as such unions would also be non-existent. The implementation of AI is something that cannot be prevented. All we can do is to adapt and make the best of it,” he added.
By: Fred Gadese-Mensah/adrdaily.com