Monrovia, July 16, 2021… The Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Labour, Sen. Wellington Geevon Smith has commended the Minister of Labour, Cllr. Charles H. Gibson for the level of passion he has for the labour sector since taking over the office of Labour Minister.
Senator Smith has also appreciated the Minister Gibson for prioritizing the ratification of the three ILO Conventions which he described as very key to where Liberia is as a nation; because we have to put our house in order.
Senator Smith made these assertions at a one-day symposium for the Senate Committee on Labour and other Senators for the Ratification of ILO Convention 100 and 138 and the Amendment of the 1986 International Labour Organization (ILO) Constitution organized by the Ministry of Labour in collaboration with ILO.
According to Sen. Smith there are too many concerns and issues surrounding our labour regulations and as such, it was good that the Minister of Labour call members of the Labour Committee and other Senators to look at those areas in the ILO Conventions before putting them on the Floor in the senate for ratifications.
He said by organizing the symposium puts them in the position to have an insight as to what the Executive will be submitting to the Senate and appreciate the Minister for such.
Senator Smith is also recommending a National Dialogue because according to him he observed that across Liberia, we are making our workers vulnerable to employers. He said that is why he is calling for a National Dialogue. “For instance, when you look at concession areas, a man and his wife and whole family had been working with this company for ten to fifteen years, he considered employee and management was paying benefits. Out of the sadden, management takes that Division where he was assigned to and contract it. Management is no more responsible for him only contractors. He is made vulnerable to the decision of that contractor because he has to live. Is that how we treat our workers and so that is why I am calling for this National Dialogue to look at issues affecting workers and the labour sector. We have to sit down and look at our workers interest.
Earlier Labour Minister Cllr. Charles H. Gibson welcomed the Senators and outlined the benefits Liberia stand to gain from the ILO following the ratification of the two conventions.
He pledged his Ministry’s commitment to working with the Liberia Senate in restoring peace and industrial harmony in the labour sector of the country.
Minister Gibson praised the relationship between the Ministry of Labour and the International Labour Organization (ILO), especially its Regional Office for West Africa for the coordination and cooperation in enhancing the labour sector of Liberia.
For his part, ILO Country Manager, Mr. Salif Massalay said that the objective of the one-day symposium is to ensure the ratification of ILO Conventions 100 which speaks about equal pay for equal work and 138 on the Minimum Age for work and the amendment of the ILO Constitution of 1986.
He said that the symposium was also intended to deepen the understanding of members of the Senate Committee on Labour and other Senators about those ILO Conventions and ensure that at the end of the day are ratified by the Senate.
“I am happy that it went well and that they understood those conventions and that a gap analysis were conducted and the report of that analysis is in line. So the two conventions are in confirmative with national laws, policies and other documents.”