Friday, September 6, 2019

Landmark High Court decision against Malaysia Airlines empowers union leaders

Landmark High Court decision against Malaysia Airlines empowers union leaders: Judge Nordin Hassan orders MAS to pay compensation to Ismail Nasarudin for unlawful dismissal, saying it is all right for union leaders to issue press statements on workers’ plight.

HIDDEN COST OF AFFORDABLE HOME OWNERSHIP IN PENANG

PRESS RELEASE - HIDDEN COST OF AFFORDABLE HOME OWNERSHIP IN PENANG

MTUC Penang Division finds it completely unacceptable that the Penang state government has abdicated its moral responsibility in ensuring that developers, of low-cost and affordable homes, do not expliot the low and middle income wage earners by allowing such developers to coerce them to pay for add-ons.

On this score we wish to salute the Consumer Association Of Penang (CAP) for exposing the state of affairs.

Going by house buyers testimony, that they were made to fork out between RM120,000 to RM180,000 for their low-cost homes on account of the developers add ons, is nothing but day light robbery irrregardless of whether it was for a purchase of a parking lot or tilling work. In anycase the situation seems to indicate that the house buyers were left with no option to say that they do not need the such add ons.

As the testimony, of a RM42,000 house buyer stands, she was made to withdraw her entire savings to meet an additional payment of almost RM70,000 for a parking lot and a renovation package. This,  as we understand it, is explained by the Penang state government as an arrangement between the house buyer and the developer - a position that would seem acceptable except for the  question of where is the government's moral compass on ensuring the low and middle income wage earners protection to home ownership within the parameters so set by them! If a cost of a low cost house is RM42,000 or RM72,000  than it ought to be that and no developer should be permitted to impose any add ons. And, in our view, that responsibility falls on the shoulders of the state.

We, therefore, call upon the Penang state government to take a comprehensive review of the state of affairs with the objective to ensure that house buyers are protected from unscroplous developers. On this score we would implore the Penang state government to heed the CAP's views/input on the matter.


K.VEERIAH
Secretary
MTUC Penang Division
016 4184520
5.9.2019

Friday, August 30, 2019

Give details on FTAS, unions tell govt

Give details on FTAS, unions tell govt: National Union of Transport Equipment and Allied Industries Workers’ general secretary Gopal Kishnam N says trade unions should be consulted prior to each round of negotiations.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Key Performance Index On Industrial Court

Press Release - Key Performance Index On Industrial Court

MTUC takes notice of YB Dato Abdullah Sani's recent address in parliment on the issue of the conduct of the presiding Chairman of the Industrial Court, in the alleged case of Mega Steel, and are shocked that the very bastion of justice ie the industrial court has abdicated its inherent jurisdiction on account of a purported compliance to the Human Resources Minister's directive.

As we are given to understand the industrial court has been put under an obligation to dispose of cases within 12 months. We appreciate the fact that workers' cases be dealth with in the shortest possible time but what is disturbing is that, in the process, due justice to the workers involved can be compromised as in the case in question.

It is, thus, our case that the industrial court ought to be given the space to act on its own withouth any interference by the Minister. There is no gain saying that circumstances, in each case, will have considerations of its own. And the Honourable Industrial Court ought to  subscribe to the higher call of social justice without fear, or favour, to politically appointed authorities. A court of social justice, the Industrial Court, cannot be even viewed as subservient to thier Minister.

 At this juncture MTUC Penang ponders whether the Industrial Court should continue to be placed under the jurisdiction of a political apppointee i.e the Minister Of Human Resources  or ought to be escalated to an independent entity. On this score MTUC Penang Division re-calls that there was a proposal, a long time ago, to migrate the Industrial Court, to be structured within a division of the High Court of Malaysia. It was expounded that, by virtue of such a migration, the Industrial Court would be vested with the jurisdiction of a court of first instance and aggrieved parties having a right to an appeal as oppossed to a process of judicial review motions as the case so prevails.

We, in MTUC Penang Division, are of the opinion that the current government ought to give serious consideration to the above said possibility. In our view such a migration would remove the notion that the Industrial Court is beholden to the executive.

In conclusion we call upon the Honourable Minister Of Human Resources to refrain from interfering with the Industrial Court's inherent jurisdiction in the disposal of cases before it.

K.Veeriah
Secretary
MTUC Penang Division
016 4184520
19.7.2019


Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Cases Of Union Busting, the NUBE's Fight

Press Release - Cases Of Union Busting, the NUBE's Fight

At the on-set MTUC Penang Division extends its salutations, to the National Union Of Bank Employees (NUBE), on its tenacious endeavours in fighting Bank Maumalat and Alliance Banks' "union busting" actions.

We are of the view that what happened in the case of the banks involved may well be prevalent in other sectors including, but not restricted, to the manufacturing and service sectors.

MTUC Penang Division has received complaints that employers are engaging workers on an apprenticeship but in reality they are assigned to carry out duties of production workers. We have, also, received reports that employers are resorting to engaging production workers on either a temporary or so called fixed term contract. And, in the worst case secnario, employers just "out-source" their manpower requirements to circumvent the workers right to trade union representation and protection of collective bargaining.

MTUC Penang Division, therefore,  is of the view that, irregadless of the nature of the contract, the right to trade union representation must be respected by employers having regards to Article 10 of the Federal Constitution. In consonant with the said Article 10, MTUC Penang Division calls upon the Minister Of Human Resources to make the necessary amendments, to the relevant labour legislations, so as to ensure workers rights, to trade union representation and collective bargainimg is not denied.

K.Veeriah
Secretary MTUC Penang Division
13.7.2019
016 4184520

Monday, July 1, 2019

Malaysian Workers Don't Want To Work, Dr. Mahatir

Press Release - Malaysian Workers Don't Want To Work, Dr. Mahatir


There is this adage which states "look before you leap". Sadly the Minister of Human Resources gave no attetion to it when he elected to subscribe to the plantation owners' call for exploring the possibility of hiring workers from the African continent.

Today he back-tracks on the issue at the behest of his supreme leader the Prime Minister, Dr. Mahatir. Speaking of the "supreme leader" MTUC Penang Division abhors his statement that Malaysian workers "don't want to work" (The STAR page 2 30.6.2019). That was a sweeping statement devoid of any substantive evidence.

If Dr. Mahatir had confined his statement to the unwillingness of Malaysians to work in the plantation sector our  response would be simply this - if the Vietnamese and Indonesians have decided not to work in the plantations in Malaysia BECAUSE wages in their countries are comparable to what our plantation owners pay the big question is whether wages, in the Malaysian plantation sector, has stagnated in comparison to wage empowerment in those countries! The apparent answer, in our opinion,  is a big yes!

Consequentially,  what needs to be examined is the issue of living conditions and wage levels in the plantation sector that would attract our workers to seek employment in the said sector. Until and unless wages, and living conditions in the plantation sector is set at a conducive level, we will never be able to draw our labour force to fill the optimum labour requirement in the said sector.

Hence, we wish to remind the Pakatan Harapan government of its pledge to implement a montly wage of RM1500.00 though that, itself, is not an appropriate rate according to the Bank Negara Malaysia's report. In fact it is Bank Negara's recommendation that we move towards a 'living wage' module i.e. sufficient income levels to meet ones basic economic needs with a little bit to spare!

MTUC Penang Division, having regards to the matters set-out hereinbefore, calls upon the government to pursue labour centric reforms,  be it empowerment of wages, enhancement of working conditions or objective labour law reforms having regards to universally accepted labour standards.

In conclusion it is our view that issues, related to the working class struggle, ought not be viewed in a tunnel vision prespective. Demeaning statements such as "Malaysian Workers don't want to work" attributted to the Prime Minister is an insult to the contribution of the working class who build, and continue to be the back- bone, of our nation's progress, economic or otherwise.

K.Veeriah
Secretary MTUC Penang Division
016 4184520
1.7.2019