Ghana Ports & Harbour Confusion hits Tema Shipyard

The senior and junior staff workers union executives of the Tema Shipyard have blamed the General secretary of the Maritime and Dock Workers Union for the purported confusion at the company.

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The Junior and Senior Local Unions of the Maritime and Dockworkers’ Union (MDU) of TUC of the PSC Tema Shipyard and Dry-dock Limited have accused a ‘renegade’ union at the shipyard of using intimidating tactics to get its members out of work.

They disclosed that the leaders of the Port, Seamen, Maritime and Dockers’ Union (PSMDU) are acting with impunity because they allegedly have the tacit support of the management of the state-owned facility.

A statement issued and jointly signed by Fuseini Shahamu-Deen and Patrick Kwame Attikey, Chairman and Vice Chairman for SSU and JSU respectively, said, “We go through threats and fabrication of lies against us from the PSMDU activists each day and we suffer discrimination.”

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They continued, “We condemn the recent attacks on the General Secretary of MDU, Mr Daniel Owusu-Koranteng, as baseless and part of the tactics to use fabrications, lies and intimidation which are the tools they have used all along to advance their selfish interest.”

The statement said, “It is known to all the members of MDU that Mr Daniel Owusu-Koranteng is highly respected for his honesty and accommodating leadership style. It is for his honest leadership that the members of the Maritime and Dockworkers’ Union overwhelmingly voted for him to continue his leadership in the second term. No amount of lies and fabrications from the PSMDU leaders can affect the character of such an honest person.”

The statement claimed that “PSMDU members and their leaders are the ones creating all the trouble in Tema Shipyard and there is enough evidence to support our assertion because we have complained of such threats to the management of PSC Tema Shipyard and Dry-dock Limited.”

“It is time for us to get the whole nation to know and appreciate that the Junior and Senior Staff Local Union of MDU of TUC are going through intimidation and threats simply because we have opted to remain members of the MDU,” it added.

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According to the statement, PSMDU leaders were elected as local union executives of MDU who broke away from MDU without resigning from their positions as MDU executives and had been operating the local union account which belongs to MDU.

The statement said on November 18, 2016, “A number of PSMOU members under the guidance of their leaders mobilised themselves and violently forced two MOU members namely, Brother Farouk Abdul Razak and Brother Abubakar Salifu, out of the company for the simple reason that the two members of MDU had indicated that they were members of MDU in a meeting in the office of the Chief Labour Officer on 17th November 2016.

The so-called leaders of PSMDU have employed lies and intimidation to threaten workers into submission even when the union has no legal mandate to represent workers in the company because the Chief Labour Officer has revoked the Collective Bargaining Certificate (CBC) which the PSMDU used wrong means to secure.”

The statement charged the PSMDU leaders to take responsibility for their actions which, they said, had brought “fear and serious division among the workers.”

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