Labour entities, unions oppose govt’s privatization plan

March 1, 2015 Off By Web Desk

KARACHI: Sindh Labour Solidarity Committee, a representative body of trade unions and labour support organizations of the province has rejected the privatization plan of the government and termed it anti-labour step of the government. The members of the Committee at a press conference at Karachi Press Club on Monday announced to support the campaign of All Pakistan WAPDA Hydro Electric Workers Union against privatization of WAPDA and other public sector organisations.

Habibuddin Junaidi of All Pakistan Trade Union Organisation, Shafiq Ghauri of Sindh Labour Federation, Malik Lal Khan of Trade Union Defence Campaign, Mehboobur Rehman of All Pakistan WAPDA Hydro Electric Workers Union, Shaikh Majeed of PIA Skyways Union, Mohammad Jafar Khan of Muttahida Labour Union, Jaleel Shah of KPT Labour Union, Rehana Yasmeen of Hosiery Garments General Workers Union Sindh, Lateef Mughal of Peoples Labour Federation and other trade union leaders attended the press conference.

The labour leaders demanded of the government to include experts with economic and social sciences background in the Privatization Commission for protection of workers right. In the past, the privatization process has left negative impact on workers and thousands of workers were rendered jobless due to privatization process in the past.

“Privatization has caused heavy losses to the national exchequer,” said Karamat Ali, Executive Director of Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research (PILER). An economic expert has conducted a research on the privatized organizations and he found that most of the organizations were earlier earning profits but after privatization they were closed down.

The new owners either sold the properties or converted the industrial properties into commercial establishments and removed all the workers. Ali said after the privatization, many profitable but privatized units were closed down by the new managements thus all the workforce lost their jobs and the nation suffered colossal losses due to it.

They demanded to hold a full-fledged discussion on the privatization policy of the present government in the parliament and provincial assemblies. “We demand the government to bring the privatization issue at the level of Council of Common Interests (CCI),” Karamat Ali said.

Habibuddin Junaidi said that privatization process had failed all over the world. The main concern is privatization of utility service provider organizations, which has resulted in depletion of these services. He said Sindh Labour Solidarity Committee had supported all the anti-privatization movements of the workers.

Malik Lal Khan said the capitalists had looted the national exchequer in the name of privatization and over 72 billion dollar from the privatized organizations have been transferred in foreign accounts.

Shaikh Majeed demanded the government to take over all the privatized companies.

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