By Our Reporter
Information reaching The New Crusading GUIDE points to soaring discrimination, racism, abuse of Ghanaians workers by the expatriate staff at the Voltic Ghana Limited, a premier brand in the water bottling and beverages industry.
Management of the company, insiders say, has resorted to subtle discrimination against the staff and varied forms of abuses which situation consistently put the staff; particularly Ghanaians under pressure, thereby forcing most of the management staff to resign.
The environment, this paper understands has been poisoned with oppression, suppression, intimidations, threats of job loss, divide and rule tactics just to mention few.
This paper discovered that the expatriates abuse of staff and extreme exploitation of the Ghanaian hospitality is having negative effect on most staff of the once thriving friendly Indian- owned company, which was grown and made attractive by dint of hard work of it Ghanaians workers, has now become a den of torture, mental harassment and blatant racial abuse of the very people who have worked over the years to make the business attractive and lucrative for the acquisition by the multi-national companies.
However, poor innocent salesmen, finance production staff who were acting on instructions are consistently blamed and sacrificed for no wrong doing especially with the HR allegedly doing a lot of behind-the-scenes dirty work and undercutting.
Racism and Discrimination:
All the expatriates are said to be treated like Arabian kings and currently living in US$38, 000 accommodations or more each around Cantonments and Airport Hills with their kids attending the most expensive basic schools in the country.
Some key staff who work at the hinterlands are denied the required logistics to work or given rickety vehicles and literally pushed to deliver the targets assigned failure of which they are threatened with being fired or forced to resign.
The reign of the MD deliberately whittle down the reporting lines in order to silence those influential middle managers whom have worked with the company for over ten years, chalked fantastic success in the past, equipped with quality professional experience who are seen as being too vocal, influential and this saw the dipping down of the business due to poor top management practices.
Recently, two Ghanaians in charge of Plant and Logistic have been subtly pushed aside and an expatriate brought on to lord over them and pushed them around according the whims and caprices of the MD and his Finance Director.
Abuse of Power and Constant Harassment:
The MD has partnered with the HR Managers who has become a mole and a stooge for this expatriates to consistently fire and caution any staff seems to be confident, outspoken, professional and well versed in what he does.
Those who are seen as independent minded, confident and vocal on bad management practices are consistently harassed and the modus-operandi for used by the MD, FD and the HR Manager.
Barely two months after the resignation the former Ghanaian Financial Director, some of the key persons who used to work closely with him have been targeted, his deputy whom could consistently stay in the office for long hours and report the next day as early as 6am, work throughout the weekends to the detriment of his health and family is being frustrated by the machinations of management which frequently invites him to the office of the MD and verbally threatened, and harassed for purported non-performance and faults-finding.
He eventually resigned due to the bad blood and hostile working environment. Interestingly, this same person, prior to the arrival of expatriatehad been recognized as the best high flyer in the Finance Department and was even selected to be on a foreign top management development program.
All these are done with a strong collaboration of the current HR Manager who cunningly relates with the Ghanaians to siphon information, hatches plans for the expats one of which is “negative email trails of fault finding and short comings of the staff, fake disciplinary hearings and later push the person into to the “den of wolves.”
At the time of this publication we are reliably informed the next person that has been targeted by the MD and the FD is the Manager in Charge of the national receivables for excessive debts when his professionally laid-down credit policies are being consistently violated.
As if that is not enough the person in-charge of account receivable has also been targeted, constantly being harassed, abused professionally, emotionally tortured( regular invitation to MD is office and threatened with being fired among other things) and discriminated against.
Though he does not have control over lots of sales activities and decisions taken by the top management in the quest to meet their targets at month ends.
Meanwhile, when this paper contacted the Country Public Affairs and Communication Manager of Voltic (GH) Limited, Joyce M. Sackitey-Ahiadorme, via phone the first time she asked that we allow her space to forward our queries to management for a response.
And we contacted her again (still via phone), she described the allegations as complete “lies and falsehoods” cooked by some Ghanaian staff. According to her, the claim of intimidation and discrimination against Ghanaian staff in the company was a surprise since there were no records within the company and Labour Commission Department to that effect.
“There are laws and policies in this country which guarantee employees safety and protection at working environments. So, if the employees have issues with their employers they have to report the problems to the Employees’ Association Union, and the management of the company would sit down after which the Labour Commission would come in… and this is the way it should be done,” Madam Sackitey-Ahiadorme said.
“I can tell you on record that as PRO of Voltic Ghana Limited, this is the first time l am hearing complaints of Ghanaian staff being intimidated, abused and discriminated at the company,” the PRO told this paper.
She said management holds annual durbar which serves as a platform for workers to voice out their grievances, “but since the inception of these durbars there have not been any complaint(s) of staff intimidation, abuse, disrespect and discrimination.”