Liberia: ArcelorMittal Reaches Agreement with Aggrieved Redundant Workers
Monrovia – Following a tripartite meeting amongst the Government of Liberia, Arcelor Mittal Liberia (AML) and aggrieved workers who were made redundant by AML in 2015 and 2016, an agreement has been reached to end the standoff which resulted into a blockade of the rail tracks that Arcelor Mittal operates.
Under the agreement, which was struck following discussions on Saturday, August 22 at the Ministry of Justice, the company is required to financially compensate the aggrieved employees. It was also established that the company did not give the right of first refusal to them before filling their positions.
In a statement after Saturday’s meeting, AML thanked the government for its mediation efforts, while committing to negotiate a financial compensation package for “eligible redundant employees”. It also requested an immediate removal of all obstacles blocking the railroad as of the 22nd of August.
The Ministers of Justice, Labour and the Legal Advisor to the President led the talks while the aggrieved workers were represented by their Chairman, Kinston Nyandibo and several other representatives. Arcelor Mittal’s Chief Operating Officer, Johannes Heyatek, led an array of the company’s managers
The dispute between AML and the aggrieved former employees which had been ongoing for several years came to a head on Tuesday when several workers who claimed to have been declared redundant illegally staged a protest action by blocking sections of the Tokadeh – Buchanan railroad use by AML to transport iron ore from its mining sites in Nimba to the Port of Buchanan.