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Now FTZ workers threaten to move ILO against Govt


Pabodha Hettige
 The General Services Union of the Free Trade Zone yesterday threatened to file a petition with the International Labour Organisation if the government does not take immediate steps to compensate the workers who were attacked during the protest on May 30th.“Nearly 270 FTZ workers were attacked during a peaceful protest and still about 20 have not been able to report to work due to the injuries sustained and none of those victims have been compensated by the authorities,” Secretary to the FTZ workers union Anton Marcus said.

Workers were protesting against the then proposed private sector pension scheme of the government.

The union has already taken the matter to International Trade Union Confederation.

Marcus also said that ten fundamental rights violation cases regarding the attack and not providing compensation were currently pending before the Supreme Court.

“Although the union requested an independent inquiry to be carried out regarding the attack no such step has been taken by the authorities,” he said. Instead the government had appointed a commission headed by retired justice Mahanama Thilakaratne to submit a report on the incident.

Although the report is said to have been submitted the FTZ trade union so far has not seen it. “We have written a letter to the Presidential Secretariat demanding a copy but so far a positive response has not been received,” he said.

FTZ trade union has launched a joint TU action in collaboration with 26 unions to raise funds for the workers who were attacked on May 30th.

“At a fund raising event organized on Monday (11) at Biyagama FTZ we were able to raise Rs.400, 000 from the FTZ employees,” Marcus said.

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