Asry workers stage pay rise rally
Manama, June 3, 2013
The workers of Bahrain-based Arab Shipbuilding and Repair Yard Company (Asry) staged a sit-in yesterday (June 2), demanding pay rise and bonus.
Asry Trade Union president Abdulwahid Alnajjar pledged hundreds will continue protesting until their two per cent pay rise is increased, reported the Gulf daily News (GDN), our sister publication.
"The annual pay rise for us is two per cent, although all the workers in private and public companies get three per cent increase," he told the GDN.
"The increase given to us is not rewarding, although we are working in harsh conditions. Also, we didn't get our annual bonus this year."
Alnajjar urged the company to be more transparent with union members in hopes of solving labour disputes.
"The company's management has failed to update the trade union about the profits and they also blatantly interfered in the workers' demands," he alleged.
"All trade union members did not want to escalate the problem and protest, but they were forced because of obstacles made by company board members. These problems have worsened in the last six months.
"Our demands are backed and confirmed by the Labour Ministry in a meeting between Asry and the trade union on May 14. We received a letter addressed by the ministry, saying that our problems would be sorted out, but there has been no positive response from the company."
Alnajjar said they will continue the sit-in today because the company did not respond to their demands.
"This was our second sit-in, the first was last Wednesday, but there is still no response from the company," he said. "We need to have a response from the management, as we are asking for rights and nothing more than that."
Officials from the company and ministry were unavailable for comments. – TradeArabia News Service