Liberian President Pleads With Firestone Workers - Tire Review Magazine

Liberian President Pleads With Firestone Workers

(Akron/Tire Review – Monrovia Inquirer) Amidst reports that workers at the Firestone Rubber Plantation have embarked on a go slow in protest over the management's decision to continue effecting a 37.5% deduction in their salary arrears, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has pleaded with the workers to accept the deduction.

However, the Firestone workers have categorically rejected the president’s appeal.

President Sirleaf, over the weekend, traveled to the plantation area in Harbel where she met with the management and the Firestone workers in an effort to find an amicable solution to the long-standing dispute between Firestone management and the workers.

Addressing the workers who were in a happy mood to receive her, President Sirleaf told the workers that the issue concerning the 37.5% deduction came into play as a result of bad governance by previous Liberian leaders.

She said that the fault was neither attributed to government nor the Firestone management and therefore urged the workers to accept the deduction.

But the president’s plea to the workers was strongly opposed by the workers, and a cross-section of them made a walkout.

The Liberian leader, not disturbed by the unusual attitude of some of the workers, urged the Firestone management to improve the living conditions of the workers at the rubber plantation and to also create educational opportunities for the kids in the area.

For his part, the general manager of Firestone, Charles Stewart, said that more kids have been enrolled in the school system in the area.

He assured that the management would continue to do its best in serving the interest of the employees.

In a related development, Star Radio reported yesterday that the workers of the plantation said they were disappointed over the statement of the president.

The Firestone workers said that, for them to go to work in the absence of the payment of the 37.5% deduction effected by the Firestone management over the years, is unacceptable.

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