Daniel Nii Kwatei Titus Glover, Deputy Minister of Transport, says government would not watch over the collapse of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA).
Workers of the GPHA on Tuesday started a week-long red attire protest as part of a road map to protest against unfavourable clauses of the Meridian Ports Services (MPS) port expansion concession.
Mr Glover, who chaired a committee formed by the Economic Management Team led by Vice President Dr Mahamadu Bawumia to look at the concession, said “we are not sleeping on this matter, it is receiving the urgent attention from government and we will do everything possible to ensure that we are able to deal with this problem”.
He added that “it is true that the President through the EMT commissioned us to look at the MPS GPHA relationship, we have done our report, we have submitted it and it is under study”.
He therefore appealed to workers of GPHA not to put the law into their own hands and end up destroying or harming anybody adding that government had a fantastic relationship with the unions therefore the best way to resolve such issues was to go to the table to resolve them over a talk.
He cautioned union leaders of the GPHA not to charge workers into agitation as that would make the staff look bad in eyes of government.
Mr Joshua Ansah, Deputy Secretary-General of Trades Union Congress (TUC), on his part, stated that TUC had already taken steps to resolve the impasse including holding several meetings with those who mattered on the issue.
Mr Ansah added that another meeting between the MPS and the Maritime and Dock-Workers Union (MDU) on April 24 stressing that strike actions in any form should be a last result.
Mr Ebenezer Kodwo Taylor, Chairman of the Tema District Council of Labour (TDCL), raising the issue during a May Day symposium in Tema, stated that “the issue started as a small fire and degenerating into something else, casuals, contract, permanent staff are all in red to protest their displeasure”.
Mr Taylor, who is also a staff of the GPHA, said he saw no reason why the issue could not be addressed, as according to him, the concession agreement had a lot of flaws with contents monopolizing port operations for the MPS.
He questioned why the committee report had been shelved adding that TDCL was not happy about the happenings at the Port stressing that “we don’t want any issue to destroy the industrial peace in Tema”