“Any law that forces an individual or a group of people to join a union or an association is outrageous. Even in the 1992 constitution, nobody can be forced to join a union; nobody, freedom of association is enshrined in the 1992 constitution and so the issue of forcing drivers to join a union is unconstitutional…” said Kwesi Pratt, Editor of the Insight newspaper.
The renowned journalist was reacting to the new by-law introduced by the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA).
According to the AMA, commercial vehicles in the city should join a union for their activities to be properly regulated.
According to them, the new by-law is in line with Legislative Instrument (LI) 2180 (2012), which regulates the operations of commercial vehicles under the various metropolitan, municipal and district assemblies (MMDAs).
However, contributing to panel discussion on Peace FM’s morning show, ‘Kokrokoo’, Kwesi Pratt condemned the AMA for instituting such law which infringes on the right of the taxi drivers.
“…you cannot compel anyone to join any union; that era is gone and gone forever. Before you operate a taxi, you go through various registrations and it is a way of regulating them. This arbitrariness of joining unions doesn’t make sense. We shouldn’t encourage it…it is not in the interest of the taxi drivers. It is a violation of their rights and we should frown on it…the naked harassment is not good” he admonished.
Kwesi Pratt added that the taxi drivers should be respected because their work comes with so many risks.
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