Business News of Thursday, 26 January 2017
The Professional and Managerial Staff Union (PMSU) of GIHOC Distilleries in Accra yesterday demonstrated against the management of the company over salary increment.
The Union`s Chairman, Mr Samuel Aihoon, said the union had presented its grievances to the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union (ICU) at a meeting held earlier this year but they had heard nothing from the union.
“Some of us have worked continuously for about 20 to almost 39 years and can testify that GIHOC has the most peaceful working environment in spite of the fact that we produce alcoholic beverages. The workers are calm and law abiding and because of our peaceful nature, management takes advantage to cheat us,” he said.
He said the leadership of the workers faced victimisation whenever it was time for salary negotiations and were treated as enemies.
“There is a divide and rule tactic going on with some few workers and managers having their salaries increased year after year, an act which is killing the spirit of many hard-working staff,” he disclosed.
Mr Aihoon alleged that the Managing Director (MD) was not friendly and this had resulted in very poor staff welfare and that workers who had worked hard to sustain the company were threatened with dismissal at the slightest error.
Increment in salary
He said what triggered their recent action was a recent appraisal form for salary increment that was done for a selected few and claimed that one manager had a 100 per cent salary increment and 50 per cent bonus.
The union was, therefore, asking for full payment of their annual increment and all arrears with interest for the number of years that management had defaulted in honouring the collective agreement and an immediate correction of the anomaly in their salary.
“Salary administration has been messed up higgledy-piggledy with junior staff being paid higher than senior staff, a deliberate disorder which cannot be found in any government institution or organisation,” he added.
Mismanagement of funds
A document sent to the ICU boss signed by the chairman of the union stated that they needed a better send-off package for staff leaving the service of the company on superannuation or retirement.
They claimed that the MD had bought two brand new expensive vehicles for herself from the company’s coffers in less than two years.
In an interview with Daily Graphic, one of the workers said though the company exports some of the products to other countries it does not tally with the company’s coffers. “We export some of the goods to Nigeria and other countries but the management of the company always complains about the coffers being empty,” he disclosed.