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25.07.2005 Regional News

Forestry Workshop opens at Akim Oda


Akim Oda, (E/R), July 25, GNA - Forty newly elected branch union officers of the Timber and Wood Workers Union (TWU) and women activists of the union drawn from all over the country are attending a five-day workshop on Occupational, Health, Safety and Environment (OHSE) issues in forestry at Akim Oda.

The workshop, which is being organized by the International Federation of Building and Wood Workers (IFBWW), Geneva and the TWU is aimed at creating and increasing awareness about health and safety among the participants at their various workplaces. Opening the workshop, the General Secretary of the TWU, Mr. Joshua Ansah said the broad goal of the programme was to ensure that workers in forestry/timber and wood industries live in healthy environment and their health protected.

He said in every activity undertaken by a worker, there was the possibility of an accident, adding that industrial accidents were as a result of unsafe acts and or unsafe working conditions. Mr. Ansah said every accident causes suffering to the victim, his or her family and those resulting in death had debilitating effects on family life adding, "damages and injury sustain entail cost and also waist of time."

He told the participants that they could only ensure safer working conditions when they had some knowledge about hazards and ways of ensuring health and safety at enterprise level. The Eastern Regional Principal Industrial Relations Officer, Mr Nathaniel Mensah said occupational health and safety had become so important at all levels of human endeavours, creating major global concern.

This, he said, was because information had it that thousands of workers die as a result of occupational and health hazards and at times due to human errors.

The Deputy General Secretary of the TWU, Mr I. K. Nkrumah, charged the participants to take the workshop serious to help protect them, saying "no compensation can restore the health or life of a human being."