HESAG campaigns for solid cultural practices to reduce workplace accidents

AGA engineers working flat out to replace the power system at Jimi
AGA engineers working flat out to replace the power system at Jimi

Professor Victor Yao Atsu Barku, the Director of Programmes and Planning at Health and Safety Ghana (HESAG) has stressed the need to build a strong prevention culture to eliminate causes of work place accidents, injuries and diseases.

He has also called for a transformational approach towards prevention where the three dimensions of Safety, Health and Well-being must be integrated to prevent work related accidents at all levels of work.

Prof Barku was speaking at a stakeholders’ seminar to mark this year’s World Day for Safety and Health at Work organised by HESAG in collaboration with the Central Region branch of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG).

It was on the theme “the role of the employer and employee in promoting safety and health at work”.

Prof Barku implored employers to invest in safety and health at work places adding that, healthy working conditions paid off economically, reduced human suffering and protected assets.
He emphasised that both the employer and employee constituted principal agents for promoting safety and health at the work place and therefore should be conscientised to build strong prevention culture where they would be cautious of their health, safety and well-being.

Prof Barku said as the country continued to industrialise to create more jobs the possibility of more people to be exposed to workplace physical, chemical, biological and other forms of hazards was high.

In this regard, he said there was the need to incorporate safety and health policies in industry to keep employees out of risk and to prevent adverse impacts and hazards.

Speaking on the current situation of OSH in Ghana, Dr. Francis Nsiah, Technical Advisor on Occupational Health and Safety at HESAG said though Ghana was a signatory to the ILO convention number 155 1981, it was yet to rectify that convention.

Again, he said Ghana had different agencies under different jurisdictions that monitored different industries for workplace and employee safety, but there was no national policy nor processes that governed OHS management.

Dr Nsiah, an expert in Workplace Safety and Health called for an improve collaboration between the relevant governmental institutions on OSH as well as the integration of the prevention of occupational diseases into labour inspection and health surveillance programmes.

According to him, there was the need to improve on the capacity of occupational health services for workers’ health surveillance, monitor the working environment and implement preventive measures.

He encouraged more social dialogue on issues related to OSH at national and workplace levels among governments, Civil Society Organisations, employers and employees and their organisations.

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