Montserrado County Senator Abraham Darius Dillon has written plenary of the Liberian Senate, asking that body to investigate alleged bad labor practices at APM Terminals, a British-owned company.
In a communication to the plenary Wednesday, August 26, 2020, Senator Dillon requests his colleagues to investigate, including illegal dismissals by the Management of APM Terminals that is involved in cargo handling at the National Port Authority.
He notes that such practices, if they existed, violate the company’s collective bargaining agreement with workers, the Decent Act and its own handbook. The Montserrado Senator, who is seeking re-election in December, recalls that the matter has been as far back as 2014 wherein the Dock Workers Union of Liberia has written many communications to relevant government agencies, including the Ministry of Labor.
However, he discloses that the House of Representatives’ Labor Committee in May 2014 convened a meeting with the Management of APM Terminals and workers and told the management to live up to its side of the bargaining agreement, but to no avail.
Besides, he notes that the Ministry of Labor in its finding of March 21, 2018, after an investigation into the same issue, requested the APM management to amongst other things, create a conductive work environment, expedite the process of contract review with the intention of reviewing all third party contracts, pay all leave allowances unpaid during previous leave periods and past annual leave entitlements.
Meanwhile, Senator Dillon in his communication reveals that up to date, none of such things had happened, while employees continue to complain, while the work environment is un-conducive and workers’ rights allegedly violated.
Grand Bassa County Senator Jonathan Kaipay then made a motion, accepting the communication, which has been sent to the Senate Committee on Labor and Judiciary to report to the plenary within two weeks.
APM Terminals is an international container terminal operating company headquartered in The Hague, Netherlands. It is one of the world’s largest port and terminal operators as well as providing cargo support and container Inland Services. The company is ranked the fifth largest container terminal operator.
By Ethel A. Tweh–Editing by Jonathan Browne