Chongqing International Construction Company,(CICO) internationally acclaimed for its specialized engineering performance in road network building and construction in the world, including Liberia has again reiterated that workers and staffers of the company are currently receiving better salary/wages far above the minimum wage set by the Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Labor.
According to Ms. Jacquelene M. Sogbandi, Human Resource Manager of the Gbarnga/Red Light Road Project, workers and staffers receive just salary and compensation for work performance alongside good incentives, including feeding, medical and transportation contrary to rumors that the company’s management is paying peanuts to workers.
She also described as “false and misleading” of a recent report in a local daily that CICO told a Senate Committee on Labor that allegations of bad labor practice which includes inhumane treatment and low wages were true.
CICO had remained focused on constructing highly standardized road network in post-war Liberia and categorically denied reports that it is involved in bad labor practice and offering low wages upon the orders of the Ministry of Labor at its project site in Weala.
CICO also rubbished reports that it told the Senate Committee that it should not take the blame for workers’ complaint because they were doing so in line with the 35 years old labor law of 0.25 cents per hour and called on the media to at all time adopt a great sense of professionalism, stressing, “My office is always opened to the public in case of any doubt on the operations of CICO,” Management indicated.
Ms. Sogbandi intimated that not only has CICO continued to showcase its professionalism and ability in road construction in Liberia to assist in the country’s reconstruction drive but had also braved itself even during the rainy season under a heavy down pour of rain to make sure all of its projects are completed on time.
Currently, the company operates a clinic/health center at its project site which caters to all of its employees trooping in on a daily basis with several residents of the area hailing the company for living up to its social responsibility.
CICO said it will continue to respect the laws of Liberia as well as all specifications spelt out in the contract agreement with the Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Public Works, thereby assuring the public that the Redlight/Gbarnga Road is well and truly on course.
CICO also disclosed that work on the Konola Bridge along the Redlight/Gbarnga Highway is ongoing with bridge engineers and other consultants working around the clock to successfully complete the bridge project.
Similarly, a Resident Engineer of the company said the road project was faced with challenges because it had been in bad condition for several years and that its timely rehabilitation will open trade and commerce after its completion. He disclosed that CICO has completed more than 20 km of new asphalt pavement on the highway.
Since the company started its operations in Liberia, CICO has immensely contributed to the Government of Liberia’s Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS) and economically impacting the lives of Liberians as evident by the employment of hundreds of skilled and unskilled Liberians who today are rebuilding their lives after years of civil war.
The company has and continues to provide training opportunities for its workforce in various disciplines, including operating earth-moving equipment as well as road safety and environmental awareness which are relevant to road construction.
CICO, an official of the company maintained, remained committed to upholding its professional expertise in road construction in Liberia and has always been up to the task to ensure that all of its road rehabilitation projects are completed in keeping with the time frame in the contract agreement.