Pepper Girl, Fairness & Investment Climate

The Victim

We have followed the Marwako episode since the story broke. While we do not agree with any action which seeks to denigrate the citizens of this country by both local and expatriate employers, we are guided by the need to be fair in whatever we do.

Social media have been expectedly busy with the subject as most contributors – if not all – are demanding that patronage for Marwako products be stopped forthwith.

The above is a costly call, the implications of which are far-reaching: the victim has spoken as has the chief executive officer of the company who is on the side of fairness.

The law enforcement agency is currently investigating the case in which the suspect is said to have pushed the head of a Ghanaian female worker into blended pepper. It would be in the interest of both victim and the suspect that the matter is managed fairly and in accordance with the laws of the land.

We are unable to deal with the intricacies of the case, such exercise being the preserve of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Police Service. Besides, we do not want to take sides in a matter which fallouts if not managed properly, can have negative effects on our business environment. We certainly do not want to post a picture of a Ghana where the rule of law is varied for citizens and expatriates.

It is more in the interest of the victim that the case is treated professionally and fairly than otherwise. The way things stand now and in the event of a warped management of the case, the message that would be posted would be enough to scare prospective investors away – no matter how minute such effect might be.

Our investment climate must not under any circumstance be tainted by actions which tend to paint us as antagonists against expatriates. We must not forget that investors prefer environments where they can count on the fairness of the law enforcement and judicial system.

Jumping to conclusion in a case in which the employer of both victim and suspect is ready to cooperate with the police and to allow the law to take its course as it were, is not the right thing to do.

For those who are clamouring for a boycott of the Marwako food brand, they should remember the over four hundred persons who would be laid off. That is not to say that employers, local and expatriate, must abuse the rights of their staff. All we are saying is let us allow the rule of law to work.

The victim, we have heard, has started posting a picture of suffering from a sort of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. We are not experts in this field, but we just have a feeling that she is stretching the subject too far. In the event that she wins the case she might not be able to work again in the Marwako environment which appears to have been fouled by the social media interventions in the manner that we are seeing.

Should the law enforcement deem it fit to prosecute, let them not hesitate to do so because we want the truth to be told. In the event there was an iota of racism or even disrespect to the victim, the applicable law should apply.