By Alusine Sesay
While workers of Bollore Transport and Logistics company staged a strike action demanding end of service benefit after it was disclosed to them that the company was about to be sold to MSC, management of the company has allayed the fears of employees that the deal will, in no way affect their employment, unless on one’s volition.
A letter from the Chairman of Bollore, Cyril Bollore, disclosed that MSC, a leading logistics company in the world, had confirmed interest in acquiring “our transport and logistics assets located in Afrfica, as well as the port concessions in India,Timor Leste and Haiti.
The letter noted that, “ Today, we have reached an agreement to transfer 100% of Bollore Africa Logistics (BAL) to MSC, after having received a favourable opinion from employee representatives in France, whom I thank for their trust.
The said deal, according to the letter, would be finalized in the first quarter of 2023.
Addressing journalists on Friday,8 April, Country Manager of Bollore, Bertrand Kerguelen, said the process of sealing the deal would last for up to 9-10 months, but noted that the company will expand its business in Africa in Hydro-electricity, among several others.
“We are in a twilight zone to see that all conditions are met. The deal will not have any negative impact on the employment of Sierra Leoneans. We are employing 15 more new operators. We are hoping to spend a lot on clean energy, which means we are here for true,” he said.
He said MSC is the first shipping line in the world with more ships than any other company.
Regional Director of the company for Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, Captain Fabjanko Kokan, affirmed that the company would implement more investment in human capital and reiterated that the deal will take some time to be sealed and that everybody would be respected.
“Our aim is to preserve job for the people and nobody will be laid off as a result of this new deal. There will be improvement in the condition of service. The trend of annual increase of salaries will continue as we have been doing .During the time of Corona, we didn’t lay off staff but maintained and paid them fully. Even if the deal with MSC didn’t go through, we are still going to continue doing business as usual-to improve on the lives of workers,” he said.