The House of Representatives has set up a committee to investigate activities of APM Terminal within the Freeport of Monrovia, which are inimical to the terms and conditions of the 25 years management contract entered with the National Port Authority thru a concession agreement.
According to a communication from Bong County district #5 Representative Edward W. Karfia, since APM Terminal took charge of the terminal at the Freeport of Monrovia, there has been persistent reports of flagrant disregard of partnership coordination with other port users coupled with serious labour abuse and deliberate refusal to adhere to port user’s regulations and policies.
He said bad labour practices; including underpayment of contractors by APM Terminal in the Freeport of Monrovia precipitated a modification communiqué after a complaint was filed in 2010 before the 53rd Legislature.
The Bong County lawmaker added that in June this year, APM Terminal unilaterally reached a decision to outsource Stevedoring Companies for operation at the Port of Monrovia by bringing in Ghanaian companies, something which clearly abrogate the joint tripartite communiqué reached among the Government of Liberia via the Liberian legislature, NPA and APM Terminal respectively on September 13, 2010.
He said at APM Terminal, Liberians are being contracted as daily hired, while Ghanaians enjoy full employment. Therefore, he has called on the House of Representatives to intervene in making sure the rights of Liberians are protected under the law, vowing not to rest until the right thing is done.
Representative Karfiaalso noted that the Management of the Liberia Petroleum Refining Company or LPRC has entered into a contract with Conex’sPetroleum Service, which has been rectified by the legislature for the usage of Conex’s storage facility at the LPRC.
“It can be recalled that since the administration of the late Harry Greaves and into that of Mr. T. Nelson William, a little over US$ 50,000,000.00( Fifty million United States dollars) was spent for the rehabilitation of LPRC storage facilities”, the lawmaker pointed out.
He said it is disheartening that despite the huge amount of monies spent by the LPRC Management, it went ahead and entered into a third party agreement which undermines government’s revenue projection.
Meanwhile, Deputy Speaker and Presiding Officer Hans M. Barchue, has set up a committee headed by Montserrado County Representative Edwin M. Snowe and Rep. Christian S. Chea of River Gee County to investigate these matters and report in one week.
By Bridgett Milton-Editing by Jonathan Browne