APM Terminal Hits Bumpy Road – Dockworkers Begin Go-slow Action
The much touted APM Terminal, a company that recently won the bid to manage and run Liberia’s port has hit its first bumpy road, as it encounters workers. Several aggrieved Stevedore or dockworkers at the Freeport of Monrovia Tuesday began a weeklong go-slow action, terming the APM Terminal concession agreement as 419.
The dockworkers also claimed that the APM Terminals have been selective in dealing with various dockworkers’ companies, marginalizing the Stevedore group in its operations since taking over the Port.
Mr. Kovah B. Jallah of the Stevedore group who spoke on behalf of hundreds of dockworkers Tuesday at the Free Port of Monrovia alleged that they were not considered in the APM Terminal Concession agreement signed between the government of Liberia and the company.
“APM Terminal tried to be selective, taking their choice. When they were signing the concession agreement with the government, we were not there. So since we were not represented as a company, they did every thing in their interest.
If the President, Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf knew Stevedore as common people company; and if I were there, we would have told her what we wanted. Ex-President Taylor did it and he listened to us. And I think she needs to listen to us. 95 percent of the vote in Monrovia comes from New Kru Town. And this is where most of the stevedore workers hail from,” Jallah noted.
The dockworkers have threatened to remain on go-slow action for a month if government does not intervene. Mr. Jallah said the over 10,000 dockworkers are often used by most companies to offload their vessels.