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Our Lives In Danger! : Workers Of Ballot Papers Printing Services run to EC

 

 



Workers of the companies of printing houses which are being contracted by the Electoral Commission (EC) of Ghana to print ballot papers for the December 7, 2020 general elections have raised an alarm bell that their personal lives are in absolutely danger, which unfortunate situation needs swift intervention by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to resolve the problem.

The threat on their lives, according to the workers, generally characterized the growing phenomenon of harassments, intimidations, terrorization and threats meted out to their lives by the gun wieding national security agents when they were at work printing the electoral ballot papers.

Scores of the workers who spoke on the strict conditions of anonymity because they said they did not want to get on the wrong side of the security agents, expressed displeasure with the wrong level at which the nation security personnel compressing of soldiers, police, EC private security and various political party agents deployed to these printing houses to monitor the process the printing of the ballot papers are handling the entire security situations at the various working places.

The security situations, the visibly workers described as a show of force and harassment, making them leaving in the state panic and fear whenever they are working, which hitherto has adversed effects on their works.

They lamented that the security agents had always took several security checks on their private bodies and after that they seized their personal belongings including mobile phones, jeweleries, monies, watchers, among others before they would be allowed to enter their printíng houses to work on the electoral ballot papers.

They had not even allowed “us to make telephone calls to family and friends at anytime we are at work.’

“Our lives in danger now so we are appealing to H.E President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to immediately come to our aid. This is simply because we have been working for these printing houses which have been contracted by Electoral Commission of Ghana to print electoral ballot papers for the past eighteen (18) years now.

“But to clarify the current issue we had never had these types of experience of the high level harassments, threats, intimidations, terrorization on our lives before like what are happening to our lives for the printing ballot papers for December 7, 2020 general elections,” the workers lamented.

Aside the issue of their accusations against the security agents for harassments, threats, intimidations, terrorization, the destraught workers spilled the beans about the unfair treatment meted out to them by their employers in the ongoing printing of the ballot papers for the forthcoming general elections.

They further expressed displeasure about the forced labour in the production of the printing of this year’s election ballot papers, saying that they are not being paid good renumeration for working extra hours for printing of the ballot papers.

“We have been working for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for the past three weeks and five days now in the un-conducive working environment ín our printing houses for the printing of the ballot papers but we want to state clearly that our bonuses for the working for over time are nothing to write home about,” they stated.

The workers complained bitterly about severe mosquitoes attacks in their various printing houses of the 24-7 that they had been engaged woking for printing of the ballot papers.

“We are currently working for 24-hour/7 every days for printing of the ballot papers and whenever we have a two hours break, we don’t have a place to sleep for that period of the resting times or hours. We don’t even have place to take our bath, and sometimes we have in stand in the darkness within the workíng place to have our bath,” the workers lamented.

The workers blamed their predicament on the government of President Akufo-Addo and management of the EC for not doing due diligence in the awarding contracts of the printing of ballot papers to their printing houses.

“We are apportioning blames to the government of President Akufo-Addo and management of the EC for problem because we are expecting that the state election regulatory institutions which are responsible for awarding of the printing of the ballot papers to the companies of the printing houses should first conduct search in the working environment of these printing houses and varify whether or not they working environments are safe for workers before they should go ahead to award the contract, but they had not done so,” they noted.

 

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