Amid speculation of an imminent redundancy at the National Port Authority, the Managing Director of the NPA, Bill Tweahway clarifies there is no such plan to downsize the workforce, noting that he has used people-driven economy approach to ensure that hundreds of employees keep their jobs in the face of the devastating impact of the novel coronavirus on the world’s economy.
The National Port Authority, dubbed gateway to Liberia’s economy, is among major revenue generation arms of government that are drastically hit by the spread of the virus.
The Freeport of Monrovia and other ports under the Management of Mr. Tweahway hosted over 31 vessels prior to the pandemic, which was its main source of revenue generation.
However, director Tweahway insists to senior staffs that he cannot take food from the table of ordinary employees during difficult time, rallying them (senior staffs) to join him in chipping in by accepting reduction in benefits, and adhering to a more responsible expense measures which saw cut in unnecessary spending to accommodate everyone.
Early this year when the IMF proposed to the Government of Liberia to reduce both salaries and workforce under a harmonization program which saw hundreds of employees of the Central Bank of Liberia downsized as a way of reducing the wage bill, Mr. Tweahway was able to work out a deal with the international body which saw the NPA increased its support national budget, as a precondition to maintaining the current workforce.
Managing Director Tweahway urged employees that in other to help him maintain them at their respective jobs, they should increase performance, productivity, and honesty on the job, and avoid malfeasance practices, which could undermine the port’s capacity to meet its financial obligations both to government and them, a win-win policy that seems to be working.
By E. J. Nathaniel Daygbor–Editing by Jonathan Browne