Pirelli Egypt workers gain presidential ear
A sit-in involving some three hundred workers from Pirelli’s factory in Alexandria, Egypt, ended after assurances were made that their grievances would be presented to Egypt’s newly sworn in President, Mohamed Morsi. The Egypt Independent shares that the workers staged the sit-in in front of the presidential palace in Cairo on 5 July to protest against alleged violations of labour laws.
According to Ahmed Kandil, head of the union committee at the Pirelli plant, presidential spokesperson Yasser Ali showed the protesting workers a copy of the complaint sent to Pirelli by the country’s Ministry of Manpower and Emigration. “We were also promised legal measures against the management if it continues to refrain from paying wages,” Kandil said.
The Pirelli workers have seven main grievances against the tyre maker. According to the Egyptian Federation of Independent Trade Unions, Pirelli stands accused of: violating Egypt’s labour law concerning the calculation of overtime pay, violating incentive regulations, violating the national collective labour agreement between workers and employers, violating a company-wide collective labour agreement, amending regulations by rescheduling wages without adoption of the alterations by the responsible administrative authority, the non-application of workers’ entitlement to ten per cent of profits, and a lack of commitment by the company to its social responsibility for health care for workers and their families.
Ahmed Kandil stated that although the sit-in is over, the 1,200 workers at the Alexandria plant will continue the strike that began on 10 June. The Egypt Independent reports Karim Gaddas, CEO Egypt at Pirelli Tyre, as saying the company is looking to resolve the situation through legal means.