Business News of Wednesday, 12 July 2017
The Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko , has described as disingenuous threats by a group calling itself the Coalition of Stakeholders on the Concession of ECG Agreement (COSECA), to head to court over government’s decision to partly privatize the power company.
According to him, the ECG workers’ approach to expressing their dissatisfaction over some clauses in the deal is inappropriate.
“It beats my imagination that we sit in a meeting, come to an agreement, sign off on them and they change their minds. Why didn’t they come back immediately to say no we disagree? But to have waited for 2 months for this matter to move on and come back not under the umbrella of the previous discussion to take a strident lone view that you disagree with grandfathering is disingenuous,” he told Citi News in an interview.
COSECA has been reiterating the stance of the Public Utilities Workers’ Union (PUWU) calling on the government to review the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) compact, which among other things will see the OCG being ceded to a private investor for 20 years.
The government has suggested it is not ready to review the deal as it believes it has addressed all the concerns of the workers.
Among the concerns was the probability of mass layoffs, but the government has given assurances that no worker will be laid off involuntarily.
But the General Secretary of PUWU, Michael Adumata Nyantakye, said at a forum with COSECA on Tuesday that the Union has initiated steps to take legal action against the concession process.
“We have a very serious objection to the model to the concession which has been proposed. The president said there will be no involuntary staff layoffs, which is good, but we find it inadequate because we have no details about how this is going to work out,” he said.
“We are taking steps with some lawyers to take this process if possible, find out from the court or seek declaration or challenge so that our rights as workers are not trampled upon,” he added.