Coco-Cola Workers Demonstrate

Staff of the Coca-Cola Bottling Company Limited in Ghana yesterday staged a protest at the premises of the company over the alleged dismissal of about 30 of their colleagues.

According to the workers, management did not follow due process in laying off their colleagues.

General Secretary of the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union, Solomon Kotei, who expressed solidarity with the angry staff, said the union would get management to do the right thing.

He said, “In our history, this is the first time an employer lays off workers without using due process. The law requires that when a company is going to carry out such an exercise, the number of people to be affected should be known, again, the criteria of selection for those to be laid-off should be set clearly. All these have not been done.

“And to think that they issued a letter admitting to not following due process, this does not create a safe environment for any worker here. Our mission here is to get management of Coca-Cola to do the right thing,” Mr Kotei added.

Last year, the management of the Coca Cola Served notice of its intension to lay off workers due to challenges exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

A memo to the staff dated August 31, 2020 said the Chief Labour Officer of the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations has already been informed of the company’s intention.

“In accordance with Section 65 (2), all affected employees shall receive a ‘Redundancy Pay’ and in lieu of notice, payment shall be made for the notice period, where necessary.

“The leadership of the respective Trade Unions, ICU and UNICOF, have in accordance with law been notified, and management will be with them to discuss the terms and conditions of the severance,” the memo said.

“After the unions and the management have agreed to the terms and conditions of the severance, the details shall be communicated to the affected staff through their Line Managers,” it added.

The company said the move had become necessary to keep the business viable.