Sime Darby, Locals Smoke Piece Pipe

localsSime Darby plantation Liberia and the local residents in Sinjay Grand Cape Count County have finally smoke piece pipe bringing an end the recent demonstration by some workers.

The residents recently embarked on a protest against the company in demand for increase in crops compensation fees. They had earlier received payment for the same  crops  cleared for land development by the company in 2011.  But they said based on the amount paid to another community, which was higher than theirs, they wanted an increase.  They further requested for US2M as a form of settlement.

A committee comprised of their representatives, government, civil society organizations, NGOs and the company all agreed to the amount previously paid to the project affected areas in 2011.

The protest which lasted for about three days was finally brought to an end on Thursday in Monrovia following an intense meeting between the company, residents and some senior officials of the Government and the GCM(Grand Cape Mount  County )

The meeting which lasted for over eight hours took place in the conference room of the Capitol Building, particularly the Liberian Senate, was later concluded in the office of Grand Cape Mount County Senator Edward Dagoseh with a resolution signed between all parties. The resolution basically called on the workers not to embark on any strike in the future against the company. That, they use peaceful means in dealing with any future problems.

Following the meeting, former Bomi County senator, now liaison of the President office for all concession companies in the country, Laihi Lassana told journalists that the local have finally agreed to  call  off the demonstration.

Mr. Lassana said the resolution was to continue the investigative committee to look into the matter within the period of three months beginning September to December 2016.

“The people have all agreed to settle the matter but we also setup a committee to investigate the whole issue and come up with their finding to be acted upon,” former Senator Lassana stressed.

He also indicated that this whole saga was an inherited one on the part of the company but the local did not understand and decided to take an alternative route.

The government of Liberia liaison said he was optimistic  that by the end of the investigation, all parties would be satisfied and work together in moving the county forward.

Meanwhile, some residents who attended the meeting confirmed the complete settlement of the mater and have vowed  not to resort to violent anymore. They  said they would  wait for the finding from the committee.

 “We do not love violent. But at times when we do not  understand some of the issues from the company, then, some of our people will end up in an angry mood,” one representative, who declined to be named   that attended the meeting told reporters  after the meeting.

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About Cholo Brooks 16924 Articles
Joel Cholo Brooks is a Liberian journalist who previously worked for several international news outlets including the BBC African Service. He is the CEO of the Global News Network which publishes two local weeklies, The Star and The GNN-Liberia Newspapers. He is a member of the Press Union Of Liberia (PUL) since 1986, and several other international organizations of journalists, and is currently contributing to the South Africa Broadcasting Corporation as Liberia Correspondent.