Inline with its commitment to Human Capacity Building, Sustainability for productivity and Profitability across the board, Socfin Sierra Leone has in partnership with the Ministry of Labour and Social Security organized a four-day training programme that brought together 350 workforce drawn from the plantation, Industrial Department and Administrative Sectors of the company.
The unprecedented follow-up training exercise was held at the Kotumahun Mill site from 6th to 9th July, 2022 and was centered on key areas as follows:
1: Occupational Safety and Health in the plantation, Industrial Department and all Administrative Sectors of the company
2: Industrial Relations and Decent work
3: Health, Safety and Environment policy as well as all the other policies of Socfin Agricultural Company (SAC)
4 : The Corporate Social Responsibilities of SAC as championed by the Community Liaison Department.
It was an interactive Capacity Building programme wherein all facilitators and participants dialogued on the topics discussed freely on audio-visual aids operated as main tools used to deliver the various lessons.
The training was jointly facilitated by experts from the Ministry of Labour and Social Security with some senior staff from the Management of Socfin.
In his address, the General Manager of SAC, Mr. Philip Tonks, emphasized that the safety of each and every worker at various work places is paramount and everyone must take away the points learned and apply them to their every day work.
The General Manager harped on the global economic challenges and assured that the SAC Management was reviewing salaries and allowances with the new increases taking effect from the 16th July, 2022.
Earlier in his presentation, the Liaison Manager, Mr. Joseph Belmon, highlighted the impressive Corporate Social Responsibilities (CSR) fulfilled by the company, adding that the Management of SAC remains fully committed to providing more for a win-win situation.
As part of her highlight, the Manager in charge of Health, Safety and the Environment (HSE Department), Catherine Ter-Bag, underscored the global Socfin policies and those of Socfin Sierra Leone. She emphasized the various policies put in place by the Management of SAC in relation to ensuring compliance with local national and international policies, laws and conventions.
She also emphasized the importance and benefits of the RSPO and ISO 14001 certifications and their relevance to the sustainability of the company.
Other highlights included :
1 : Occupational Safety and Health in the plantation, Industrial Department and all Administrative Sectors of the company.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health session, key issues included :
- Hazard identification and control
- Unsafe/unhealthy acts in the workplace
- Accidents, causes and preventions
- Safety in the Oil Palm plantation
- Safety in the construction industry
- Drugs and alcohol use andm their effects on workplace safety - Permit to work in relation to workplace safety
- Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) at work
2: Industrial Relations and Decent Work Environment.
Key Issues Discussed were:
- Decent Work
- Social Dialogue and Tripartism
- Labour Disputes and Settlement
- Employment Contracts
- Grievances and Disciplinary Management procedure.
The above were highlighted by: Regional Labour Official, South M. Jeremiah Ademokula, Acting Director - Occupational Safety and Health, Mr. Abdul Karim Conteh and Mr. Osman Conteh all of the Ministry of Labour and Safety respectively. In his closing statement, the General Manager, Mr. Philip Tonks, thanked the Mill Manager, Mr. Akwasi Adu Boahen, for his successful handling of the training. The General Manager reiterated the all-important protection of the life of every worker. The GM re-echoed his slogan to workers: “Life is number one” as without it byou do not have a job and would not be here.
Lastly, the General Manager once more encouraged all to help end the rampant fruit theft which he said has the potential to derail the most cherished Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR).