Maimed Workers Sacked For Going On Demo To Demand Better Conditions Of Work

Over 19 Ghanaian workers of Fabrimetal Company Limited at Saglemi, in the Ningo-Prampram District, have lost their daily bread after demonstrating against their Human Resource Manager, Bernard Avortri, for awful working conditions.

The company, according to checks by The Chronicle, has not recorded fatalities, but temporary or permanent horrible industrial accidents have incapacitated most of the workers, who have been sacked for pushing for better working conditions.

The injuries happen in the furnace and milling departments, where the workers cried that there are no strict safety regulations to reduce damages or spillages. They complained that no risk allowances are paid to them either.

The peaceful demonstration of the angry workers, which attracted a cross-section of the media, received a hostile reception by the Human Resource Manager, who abruptly attacked reporters, including Elvis Washington, Citi FM, Vincent Kubi, Daily Guide, and Johnny Dormenu, TV3, destroying their phones.

His physical attack on the media, outside the premises of the company, peeved the demonstrators, who, in an attempt to protect the journalists, shoved the Human Resource Manager into a gutter.

When he managed to get himself out of the gutter, Mr Avortri picked a club and whacked the head of one of the workers, who was shielding the journalists to safety.

His latter action incited the workers to chase the Human Resource Manager in a merry-go-round style in and outside the company, until later the leadership of the workers calmed them down, and rushed Mr Avortri to safety.

The Chronicle’s checks at the Prampram District Police Station revealed that four of the demonstrators were later thrown behind bars, after Bernard Avortri had reported them for assault.

Detective Josephine, who was in charge of the case, however, told The Chronicle that the suspects, after caging them for a day, were discharged on self-recognisance bail.

Fabrimetal Company Limited was later closed down for a couple of days, and when it reopened for full production in January this year, over 19 of the workers, including some of the injured and the suspects, were sacked by Bernard Avortri and three Ghanaian contractors for allegedly inciting the workers to demonstrate for their rights.

Bernard Avortri later told the media that his decision was final and that nobody could challenge it. The over 19 workers, who had been sacked, said they had formally written to the Chief Labour Officer, Accra, to step in for them to be recalled to work.

Though that letter has not been sighted by The Chronicle, a letter of resolution, signed by Kwame Anthony and copied to the management of Fabrimetal Ghana Limited, all contractors and Tsopoli District Police, read in part: “All workers have resolved that management, as well as government, should investigate all the issues surrounding their dismissal and allow the Labour Law to equally work in Fabrimetal.

“We, again, want the management to allow us to form a union, by allowing us to immediately elect our union executives.” The letter was dated December 22, 2018.