Lafarge plant truck drivers strike alleged ‘bad treatment - The People's Voice


Saturday, August 19, 2023

Lafarge plant truck drivers strike alleged ‘bad treatment

By Mercy James, Abeokuta

Trailer drivers working at the Lafarge Cement factory; under the auspices of 'Ewekoro Professional Truck Drivers' Association of Nigeria', in Ewekoro, Ogun State have been protesting alleged “unfair treatment” by the factory management and some transport companies engaged by Larfage.

The truck drivers protest,started on Monday which has led to total strike action on Friday. 

The drivers were demonstrating against poor renumeration, high handedness and casual engagement by some transport companies operating within the Lafarge Plant.

The angry truck drivers were demanding the removal of the anti workers policy and other unhealthy practices against them.

Speaking with our Correspondent on the sidelines of the protest in confidence, one of the drivers said the officers had a penchant for inflicting financial injuries on the drivers and alleged illegal deductions from their salaries for flimsy excuses, ranging from repairs of vehicles and damage to bags of cement.

He noted that the action of the management had affected the financial situations of drivers, adding that some of them were now indebted to the company.

He said, “The drivers are treated like 'nobody' in Lafarge, saying that the take home of every driver is N35,000 every month. Sometimes we have to effect repairs on the trucks with our money to keep our job. These are parts of the problems we are facing here.”

They also alleged that many of drivers had been kidnapped, while obeying 'On Time Delivery (OTD)' and humiliated because they were drivers, noting that the drivers wanted these issues addressed without further delay

Another driver who also pleaded anonymity, said “poor working conditions, poor remuneration, inhuman treatment of staff are some of the reasons for the protests”.

Some of the grievances of the protesting drivers included; "after getting to customers dispatch destination, consignment (cement) must be offloaded within 24 hours failure of which will attract #10,000; for feeding of drivers and mates, no truck should be dispatch to any customer without a standard parking space".

Others are removal of 'On Time Delivery' (OTD), post-trip and re-routing from depot to customers except from customers to depot, no more any violations except over-speeding and night-driving and drivers must be reasonably appreciated by Lafarge annually.

While calling for the safety of the drivers, they said, 'no vehicle should carry more than 30 tons, which is the normal standard.

"Mates with authorize drivers License should be allowed for physical assistant within
the plant and depot convenience.

He added that the workers wanted change and hoped that their matter would be treated with the urgency it required.

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