ON TUESDAY, THE Management of the Liberia Broadcasting System (LBS) announced that three of its employees who are also officials of the LBS Workers Union have been suspended with immediate effect for acts incompatible with their status as employees of the system. The LBS Management named the three suspended employees as Newscaster and Reporter, Alfred Rogers; Legislative Reporter Titus Tokpa and Sports Reporter Richard Manuba. The three LBS Employees according to the management will serve a two-month suspension period.
EARLIER ON MONDAY, reports had it that the three had protested on behalf of the employees against the management’s behavior of favoring those that were brought in by the Ambrose Nmah administration by apportioning to them good salary and incentives, something which did not go down well with them. Consequently, they announced at a news conference that the employees of the entity will soon go on a strike action in a bid to get public attention to their plight.
ACCORDING TO THE LBS management release, the three in separate letters of suspension were told that the LBS Management’s actions stem from the three personnel’s “continuous disrespect and gross insubordination to the senior Management of LBS and their continuous disregard for administrative channels and procedures for addressing grievances in contravention of Part IV section 2002 of the labor laws of Liberia as well as Part IV Section 1 of the personnel manual of LBS.
THE LBS MANAGEMENT also noted that the three persons are being punished for their unauthorized holding of a press conference on the premises of the system, as well as the continuous discourteous treatment of other employees of the system. The LBS Management also informed the public that it remains focused in its efforts, with full endorsement from the Board of Directors to create an enviable National Media Outfit which provides quality public service broadcast and media services for the people of Liberia.
WHATEVER MAY BE, it is prudent that the LBS work and dialogue with the Workers Union officials and not to suspend them. In the absence of this, we believe that there is a problem because they should be given serious attention through a sense of bargaining to address problems that might arise. We are not saying that the three suspended employees were in the right or wrong but it is best practice that whenever case comes about, due diligence must be applied so as to understand the cause. We are also not saying that the LBS management did not employ due diligence in this case, but we are of the view that some dialogue should have taken place as way of keeping the media fraternity and a good working relationship intact.
IT IS IN this regard that we are appealing to the LBS management to resent its decision to suspend the three and take on the venture of instituting some negotiations and a mutual one that can lead to a genuine resolution of the crisis.
STRUGGLING FOR ASSISTANCE and having launched the “LBS Dollar Campaign” aimed at raising funds from the public for the proper upkeep of this state entity, it is a bad Public Relations for such news to be coming out of the corridor of the LBS. Thus our only plea is that the LBS management, those aggrieved personnel and the LBS Workers Union should sit down and begin to dialogue that can lead to an amicable resolution of the problems, knowing that they are all public servants whose services are needed and essential to the Liberian populace.
AGAIN, WE ARE pleading with the LBS Management headed by the prolific Ambrose Nmah to call the aggrieved personnel especially the suspended officials in and start a conversation that can put this problem to rest and move the entity forward; push the ‘Dollar Campaign’ further to the people for a good result.