The Trades Union Congress, Ghana (TUC) has appealed to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to ensure that a contract for the building of a new container terminal at the Tema port is reviewed.
The TUC said the 35-year contract, signed with Meridian Ports Services (MPS) in 2015, gives the company monopoly over activities at the port to the disadvantage of other operators in the port, and would lead to job and revenue losses when the terminal begins operations in June this year.
Per TUC’s checks, the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) alone might sack 1,400 workers this year, due to MPS’s monopoly, while the state would lose millions of dollars in revenue plus more than $800million granted the company in tax concessions.
In TUC’s comments on the 2019 State of the Nation’s Address (SONA), submitted to the government, the union also expressed concern that the contract did not go through competitive bidding process.
“We are, therefore, not only concerned about the massive job losses that would result from the operations of the new container terminal by MPS, but also the huge losses in government revenue.”
“We would like to humbly appeal to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to intervene, as a matter of urgency, to ensure that the contract between government and Meridian Port Services is reviewed,” the statement said.
Tackling issues raised in the SONA, the TUC said despite achievements chalked by the government in microeconomic managements, there was the need to make such feat reflect in the living conditions of the citizenry.
“We must work together as social partners to ensure that economic growth creates more decent jobs that enables workers to own decent housing and other basic necessities of life,” the statement said.
The TUC welcomed the Social Partnership Council, which aims to bring social partners together on the management of the economy in post International Monetary Fund (IMF) era.
In the estimation of the union, the banking and energy sectors which were ongoing reforms needed critical attention as those sectors impacted on reforms and jobs.
The union commended the government for job opportunities created through the Nation Builders Corps and government’s plan to recruit more health workers as this would improve service delivery in critical sectors.
PBY TIMES REPORTER