Some dismissed workers of Vodafone Ghana have taken the bull by the horn and filed a writ of summons in an Accra high court to seek redress to halt the intimidation and unlawful dismissals being perpetuated against Ghanaians by the new owners who took over from Ghana telecom in 2007.
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) which was in opposition during the takeover strongly kicked against the sale of Ghana Telecom in the year 2007 because it was not good and had no value for money, but the former kufour government and the majority in parliament failed to see reason and went ahead with their poor judgement
Workers during the deal were deceived to pledge their support for it because they stand to benefit enormously in areas of technology transfer, improved conditions of service and above all job security guarantee, but the opposite has been the case since the new owners took over.
A source revealed that, workers think Vodafone has not treated them fairly and also did not follow laid down procedure, hence their decision to seek legal redress.
The spokesperson for the group, Abdul Majeed Bawa explained, “we think that the decision that they have taken was illegal because they did not follow the due process as laid down by the terms and conditions that they brought when they took over Ghana Telecom in 2009; they did not also follow the business policy which they themselves have formulated which makes it binding on every employee of Vodafone, so on that basis we thought that the decision was illegal, ill advised and it is against our fundamental human rights.”
“Under the terms and conditions that they themselves proposed which they gave to every employee when they took over, they stated categorically that under its order regulation, they said where this document is silent, a guidance stated in Vodafone Ghana policy statement shall apply.” The group’s lead Counsel, Alfred Agyei Mensah confirmed the suit saying, “I have been consulted by a group of workers whose appointment with Vodafone has been terminated for non performance and I think my clients are not satisfied or are displeased with the decision of Vodafone that is why we are going to court.”
In August 2009, the Trade Union Congress (TUC) kicked against Vodafone’s decision to lay off 950 employees in a compulsory redundancy programme contrary to the legal practices of the country’s labour relations.
General Secretary of the TUC at the time, Mr. Kofi Abraham, accused the company of not exhausting the legal procedures but rather using intimidation and compulsion which he described as unfair to the workers.
According to him, management of Vodafone disregarded the laid-down procedures to redundancy by not meeting with the union to discuss it before taking action.
Vodafone workers are living in fear and anxiety since they did not know when the dismissal axe will fall on them. They have therefore urged government to step in to prevent them from being rendered jobless.