A Ghanaian non-governmental organization (NGO), Youth Empowerment Synergy (YES-Ghana), has dragged a US based NGO, Cooperative Housing Foundation operating in Ghana as Global Communities, to the Human Rights Court for abrogating a contract between the two organizations.
The Ghanaian NGO is praying the Court to place an injunction on the termination of YES-Ghana’s involvement in the Youth Inclusive Entrepreneurial Development Initiative for Employment (YIEDIE) project, funded by the MasterCard Foundation in Canada.
In the writ seeking for interlocutory injunction, lawyers for YES-Ghana insisted that, the unilateral termination of YES-Ghana’s involvement in the YIEDIE project by Global Communities from 1st June 2017, will not only be “arbitrary, but unconscionable, unfair and unlawful.”
YES-Ghana is however seeking an order from the court to compel Global Communities allow YES-Ghana’s 115 employees continue working in the YIEDIE project for the five-year period under which the project is supposed to take place.
The Ghanaian NGO is also seeking an order for an interim injunction to “restrain Global Communities, their agents or assigns from carrying out the said termination on the sole ground of Article 30.3 of the agreement, and from carrying out any decision or activities with the aim of interfering with the work of the plaintiff and its 115 employees in the YIEDIE project.”
Lawyers for YES-Ghana argue in the writ that, contrary to the initial consortium arrangement as prescribed by the MasterCard Foundation’s Partner Guide, which led to the securing of appropriate funding for the YIEDIE project, the defendant [Global Communities], who was the lead applicant, decided to enter into separate agreements with each of the partners, and that several workshops had been protested by YES-Ghana against the said agreement because the terms violated the letter and spirit of the MasterCard Foundation’s Partner Guide.
The lawyers lamented that, because YES-Ghana was a lonely voice on the matter, and based on assurances by the defendant that a review of the contractual process would be done at the end of the first year of the project, their client decided to sign the said agreement with the Global Communities.
According to the writ, since the project began in April 2015, YES-Ghana has heavily invested into it in terms of mobilization, recruitment and building both human and institutional capacity which have altogether enabled it to work conscientiously on the project to achieve set targets, hence abrogating the contract will cause it irreparable damages.
Meanwhile, hearing of the case has been slated for 14 June 2017.
The YIEDIE project is aimed at creating opportunities for the youth in Ghana’s construction industry by creating about 23,700 jobs within five years in targeted cities such as Accra, Kumasi, Sekondi-Takoradi, Ashaiman and Tema.
Speaking to Citi Business News at the National Youth Construction Summit in Accra in August 2016, the Project Director of YIEDIE Ghana, Kafui Vera Mills-Odoi, stated that the project was aimed at training young people in new methods of construction using modern technology.
“YIEDIE will directly reach at least 23,700 youth with training in technical, life and entrepreneurship skills leading to employment,” she said adding that “the project applies an integrated, youth-led market-systems model to improve the capacity of youth and service providers across the value chain.”
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(Via: CitiFM Online Ghana)