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Protests, Strikes Unabated in Egypt
Protests, Strikes Unabated in Egypt
A political deadlock is in the making in Egypt which is repeatedly facing strikes, sit-ins and protests in which Egyptians are calling for their rights from a government that closed all means for dialogue The Egyptians seek only peaceful strikes as a solace to attain their rights.
Sunday, March 15,2009 08:46
by Basma Omar IkhwanWeb

A political deadlock is in the making in Egypt which is repeatedly facing strikes, sit-ins and protests in which Egyptians are calling for their rights from a government that closed all means for dialogue The Egyptians seek only peaceful strikes as a solace to attain their rights.

Labor strikes

More than 700 pensioners rallied in Ghazl Al Mahala company, protesting at attempts to dismiss them from the administrative houses and at increasing the number of revenue cases filed against them in a bid to oblige pay more money to remain in the company houses, in a clear contravention to the president’s decision in his election platform and in contradiction to statements of the Ministries of Labor Force, Interior and Investment that no worker will be dismissed from his/her house.

The protesters said that 10 % of the salary was cut from their salaries as a housing payment to remain in the houses provided that the workers will be given another houses when they retire. They added that the company board has started since 1995 filing dismissal lawsuits against residents under the pretext that they usurped the residence although there is a record in the company management confirming that the workers pay the monthly rent on regular basis.

Workers at Nile Cotton Ginning (NCGC) are lamenting their future at work according to vice chairman of the company’s union committee. The workers highlighted their rejection to the board director’s attempts to force them to take leaves and vacation days and the workers accused the board director of using their vacations to sell the rest of the company’s assets, not to give them a time to rest according to his claims.

Meanwhile, workers at water stations of 10th Ramadan city submitted mass complaints to engineer Ahmed Al-Maghrabi, the Minister of Housing, Utilities and New Urban Communities, because of not receiving their payments for more than about 15 months.

The water stations company violated the minister’s decision of enrolling these workers of the new urban societies in all cities in the Holding Company For Water and Wastewater and that payments and bonuses are fully paid to these workers by their workplaces without causing any double payment, as of Dec, 1st, 2007.

In Indorama-Misr, Shibeen El-Kom Spinning, 4000 workers carried out their threats of holding a strike in all parts of the company last Thursday after the board of directors insisted on not paying the annual bonus- up to 228 days of work, under the alleged pressure of the global financial crisis.

Said Al Jouhari, chairman of the union of spinning and textile workers, said that faxes were sent to all concerned authorities including the Prime Minister, the Minister of Labor and the General Union of Workers to tell them that it is aggravating, that the situation is like a bomb that may explode at any time, and that it can’t be contained, and that workers threaten with staging open sit-in because of the inflexibility of the Indian board which doesn’t want to pay the annual bonuses agreed upon in the bill of sale.

In spite the repeated attempts and addressing the Minister of Labor that the workers deserve to be paid this annual bonus stipulated in the contract, plus the letter sent to the General Union of Spin and Textile on February 15th, and despite the attempts to negotiate with the board but they refused t pay the bonus.

In the Ministry of Education

The decision no. 155 issued by the Ministry of Education- of canceling the job of department instructor in the primary stage of education and that department instructors supervise instructors- caused a state of confusion in the educational process and created a state of ire among hundreds of department instructors in all subjects in the ministry.

Many of the instructors affected by the decision submitted many to competent authorities topped by the Ministry of Education confirming that they were forced them to write their desires of working in only three schools although these schools don’t need their service.

At governorate of Gharbiya, hundreds of administrative employees at educational districts of Tanta, Kafr Al-Zayat, Zifta and Bassyoun maintained a strike inside their offices in a protest at the Ministry of Finance’s refusal to pay them bonuses. The strikers said that they will not stop their protests until they are given all their rights. They also warned the government and the Ministry of Education against procrastinating as this will spawn "a disaster" through completely paralyzing exams and administrative work inside districts, obstructing preparing for last year exams and auditing.

Hundreds of administrative employees at Mahalla maintained their strike and organized last week a one-hour protest march in front of the East Educational district to voice their anger at the government continuous neglect to their demands.

Regarding crises with the Ministry of Higher Education, professors at the National Research Center organized a large sit-in last on Tuesday March, 10th in protest at not paying raises to the center’s members according to the law of increasing incomes of teaching staff members at universities.

The Drivers

Last Friday, dozens of microbus drivers staged a strike against work in Ouseem City, governorate of 6 October, amid tight security measures. They protested at imposing big fines up to 900 pounds, preventing them from doing their work and forcing them to make their microbuses travel-only cars.

This actually filled streets with citizens who found no other means of transport to send them to work. They were forced to walk on foot to Manshy area to find transportation.

The drivers demanded that they be allowed to have licenses to drive microbuses like governorates of Cairo and Giza, and not to oblige them to work as travel-only drivers. They also threatened with not hitting the road unless stations are established for them like public transport buses so as to avoid security harassments.

Posted in Activites , Human Rights , Workers  
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