The Minister of Labour and Employment Relations, Haruna Iddrisu, has said government will not hesitate to revoke the free zones license given to companies that are found to be maltreating Ghanaian workers.
Haruna Iddrisu’s comment follows reports of ill-treatment meted out to an employee of Gateway Logistics Limited in Takoradi, who was chained to a container by his Italian supervisor, Manlio Maggiorotto for allegedly loitering around during working hours.
In another incident reported, an employee of the Peterpan Restaurant in Accra, was slapped with a piece of hot pizza, by her Korean employer because she supervised a pizza that got burnt.
Speaking at the inauguration of the board of the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission, Haruna Iddrisu, said his Ministry is currently looking into all issues of worker maltreatment by foreign companies operating in the country.
“We’ve jointly taken a position on the matter not to end at the condemnation of the act which is an affront to our labour legislations and practices in Ghana; but to punish same and therefore appropriate steps are being taken, even if it means a revocation of that free zones license.”
Haruna Iddrisu says the state is not only empowered by its constitution to take disciplinary action against companies who abuse the rights of citizens, but also by international conventions on labour.
“We are a signatory to all the respected ILO conventions that supports and promotes decent work and productive work environment; and the rights of workers will continuously be upheld and respected by this government and all public institutions.”
Haruna Iddrisu said he has directed the “Chief Labour Office, which is the mandatory institution, to invite the management of the company [Gateway Logistics Limited]” for questioning “and I would have no hesitation as I said to recommend a revocation of that free zones license to the Ministry of Trade and Industry, if that particular employer is not seen to be respecting the laws of our country and recognizing and respecting the rights of workers.”