-Declares Lawmaker; To Meet Present Day Reality
By R. Joyclyn Wea
Margibi County District number two Representative Ivar Jones wants a reform in Chapter 22.1 of the Decent Work Act of 2016 to fix with present day reality.
The District two Lawmaker statement is predicated upon recent action by the management of Firestone Rubber Company to turnover retirees of the company to NASSCORP for their benefit.
In Liberia and across the world, laws continue to be reformed or amended to conform to the contemporary needs of societies; to address issues that were either nonexistent or not foreseen at the time those laws were first adopted or enacted.
According Jones, the action by Firestone Management contravened Chapter 22.1 of the Act that the company is allegedly relying on therefore, there is a need to critically look at both the Decent Work Act and NASSCORP Act of 2017 so as to avoid the repeat of such situation.
Speaking recently in an telephone interview with this news outlet, the Lawmaker further asserted that the NASSCORP Act of 2017 is in conflict with the Decent Work Act as such; there is a need to have a reform.
“I’m not siding with the workers because they elected me. Firestone reliance is Chapter 22.1 of the Decent Work Act which I’m also using but, their action contravened the very Act,” he said.
According to Jones, he had begun discussion with lawyers and other light mind colleagues to look at both (NASSCORP and Decent Work Acts) to see whether it fit the reality of the day.
He equally explained that the NASSCORP Act was passed in 2017 as such, it in no way apply or affect people who were employed from 2014 but, rather those employed following the passage of the Act.
It can be recalled that Firestone planned to layoff over five hundred employees of the company due to alleged economic constraints facing the company.
Following the plan action by Firestone, Government of Liberia met with the management to discuss and find a way forward; something which did not materialize as retirees or lay-off employees were allegedly turnover to NASSCORP for their benefit as per the NASSCORP Act of 2017.
The action by the company to turnover those employees were contested at the level of the Labor Ministry, the institution clothed with authority to mediate issues between employers and workers thus ensuring a smooth working relation.
Accordingly, the aggrieved workers won the case at the level of the Ministry of Labor but at the same time blamed national government for their unfortunate situation.
According to the aggrieved workers, there were options given government by the company long before its layoff action but, none were considered by the Liberian Government.
Representative Jones has been one person contesting for retirees of the company to be settled before turning them over to NASSCORP.