WORKERS of the Tema Shipyard and Drydock Company Limited have pleaded to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, not to allow his minister for Transport, Mr. Ofori Asiamah to consider the sale of the Tema Shipyard and Drydock Company or revert the Shipyard back to the Ministry of Transport.
The Workers Union of the Tema Shipyard in their plea called on government to hasten the takeover of the Shipyard by Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA).
According to them, documentation for GPHA to take over the management of the Shipyard have come to a halt following delay in granting GPHA fully ownership by the sector ministry.
They noted that the Ministry of Transport is yet to give full clearance for GPHA to take over management of the Shipyard despite the Minister’s promise to the President during the meet the press at the Presidency.
Whistle brewing indicates that the Ministry of Transport is almost set to handover the Tema Shipyard to Lagos Deep Offshore Logistics Base LADOL, a Nigerian offshore company despite the country’s owned Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) interest. Our intelligence should indicate the Nigerian company has no knowledge and experience in docking business which is very dangerous for the Shipyard if it is finally handed over to them.
Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority, GPHA, has since 2016 invested about GH 14 million into to the Tema Shipyard showing their great commitment to make the shipyard a viable institution.
” As we speak, the Shipyard had so far received a new 35tons crane aside 200 tons crane received from GPHA earlier, two cherry pick ups. Hopefully by ending of July the Shipyard will a dewatering pump which is the heart of Shipyard, a two stage air compressor, three high pressure machines and other basic workshop tools”
“Apart from equipping the Shipyard with modern equipments the human capital is not left out. The GPHA had embarked on massive training for staff of Shipyard. The Shipyard is at the point of attaining all certification requirements including ISO”
“We are much better under GPHA, since they took over shipyard at the time the company was at point of collapsing; no jobs even fishing vessels at the fishing harbour close to us were using other docks, unable pension contributions to the appropriate institutions, huge creditors bill, no salary increments for workers since 2014, no bonus since 2013”. the workers said.
“Before GPHA took over in 1 June 2016 the Shipyard had worked on only six vessels. By end of 2016 we have worked on 24 vessels without basic tools and equipments.
In 2017 we turn around 34 vessels. From January 2018 to date we are working on our 17th vessels and we are likely to exceed our target of 40 vessels in 2018 by the end of 3rd quarter this year”
The government bought back the Malayian 60 % stake in shipyard in 2010 but still the company bears the name PSC Tema Shipyard Limited. The name registered by the Malayian at the Registrar General Department. This shows how responsible the Ministry of Transport had being.
Speaking to some executives of the workers union, they said,
“The Chief Director of ministry of Transport Mr. Selby played a major role transferring management of Shipyard to GPHA, “Mr. Chief Director what has changed? Why the turn around? They asked.
“The Minister, Mr. Ofori Asiamah has never visited Shipyard since his appointment. He always pass in front of Shipyard each time he visit main harbour and fishing harbour.
The Minister dose not understand the work of the Tema Shipyard because if he do he will not accept selling the company to a company which have no idea of Drydocking business”. They added.
Meanwhile, the sector minister, Mr. Ofori Asiamah at the last meet the press at then Flagstaff House stated that, all legal title and transfer of the Tema shipyard to GPHA will be ready in a month or 3 weeks.
“why the turn around or were the minister lying to the president and Ghanaians? They asked.
“Mr. President, Tema Shipyard and Drydock company is likely to collapse before the 2020 election if the Shipyard is sold to that Nigerian company or reverted back to the Ministry than the full take over by GPHA. The workers cautioned.