Some workers of the Ghana Airport Company Limited (GACL) on Wednesday, July 8, 2020, staged a demonstration to kick against the alleged privatization of the company.
The agitated staff who were clad in red amidst police presence say they will resist any attempts by the government to cede the management of the Kotoka International Airport to any foreign company.
General Secretary of the Public Service Workers Union, Trades Union Congress, Bernard Adjei who led the workers to protest gave reasons for their action saying they will not relent on their efforts until management provides them with better and further particulars to prove that such an agreement has not been reached.
“We have been confronted with such a situation. So, as responsible citizens of this country and a responsible union, we are using the structures and all the avenues and resources available to us to deal with this matter. There will be an engagement with the union for us to state our position on the matter. What we want to assure you is that we will not sit down and allow anything to be done at the detriment of workers”.
Meanwhile, he wants the workers to be assured of the union’s commitment to ensuring that their concerns are addressed.
“We know how you have toiled to bring the airport to the status at which it is. We know you are doing your possible best under the circumstances you find yourself. When we go to the negotiating table, we will advance your position that the airport can be and will be run by Ghanaians,” Mr. Adjei added.
Aviation Ministry dismisses privatization claims
According to the Ministry, no such plan has been mooted by the government of Ghana.
In a statement to clarify the issue, the sector Minister, Joseph Kofi Adda, urged the public to disregard such claims.
He, however, explained that Government is engaging stakeholders including the Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL), to consider a projected Strategic Partnership Arrangement between GACL and TAV-SUMMA Consortium to improve service delivery and expansion of infrastructure at the KIA.
“Indeed, what is being considered for deliberation by the Ministry and its stakeholders including the Ghana Airports Company Limited (GACL) and the TAV-SUMMA Consortium is to improve service delivery and expansion of infrastructure at the Kotoka International Airport to achieve the Government’s vision of making Ghana the Aviation Hub within the sub-region.”
“In this regard, an Executive Approval was signed by the President for the Ministry to facilitate the engagement of the Strategic Partners,” the statement noted.
He further noted that the processes for the start of engagement have not begun.
“To this end, we hereby state categorically that neither the Ministry nor the GACL has yet formally started any process of engagement on the subject matter with any stakeholder or partner.”
“We, therefore, wish to note that the false information on the sale of the Kotoka International Airport being circulated in the media/social media is the work of mischievous and malicious elements to pitch the staff of GACL and the general public against Government to achieve their diabolical agenda and erode the successes chalked in the Aviation Sector for the last three years,” he added.
Ghana Airports Company Limited’s agreement with McDan Shipping
Already, Terminal One of the Kotoka International Airport has been rented out to McDan Aviation for a period of fifteen years following the relocation of domestic flights to Terminal Two.
According to the Aviation Ministry, the rent from the operations of McDan Aviation should boost revenue generation for the Ghana Airports Company Limited.