RUSAL moves to replace dismissed workers

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…30 others laid off

After assurances by Government that the fired bauxite workers will be reinstated, the Russian Bauxite Company, RUSAL, has refused to do so, signalling their intentions of having the 61 workers replaced by the end of the week.

This was disclosed on Tuesday during a meeting with RUSAL officials, Mikhail Krupenin and Vladimir Permyakov; Social Protection Minister, Amna Ally; Junior Social Protection Minister, Keith Scott and Chief Labour Officer, Charles Ogle, where it was questioned whether all fired workers would be reinstated.

RUSAL representatives during a previous engagement to discuss the fate of the dismissed workers with former Chief Labour Officer Mohamed Akeel (centre)

While it was announced by Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman that the dismissed workers will be reinstated, company officials said those persons can only be rehired after their demands to rejoin the enterprise are laid over, along with some other conditions.

“Those who are willing to come back to the enterprise and work will have an opportunity to write their demands to be admitted to the enterprise. Each case would be examined by the administration. Each individual needs to be examined by the company administration,” Permyakov stated.

According to RUSAL, those who are not on the job have not received any payments and they have moved towards inviting persons who have a desire to join the company to do so.

However, notices were issued to an additional 30 workers, informing them that they are not to turn up for work until further notice. According to the company, the bauxite reserves are not as lucrative to investors as they were in the past.

These statements were met with strong opposition from Minister Ally, who labelled RUSAL’s actions as unreasonable and unthinkable.

“I believe that RUSAL management is unreasonable. It is unthinkable for the positions that you have taken on this issue. It is very clear that you do not want an amicable solution to this matter because you have put on the table, issues to us…which says take it or leave it,” Minister Ally posited.

She added, “You have put conditions that those who are willing to come back, their demands to be admitted to the enterprise must be laid over. I think that is unthinkable. Once the workers are back on stream, then it provides an opportunity for us to discuss and come to some agreement but to say to the workers that ‘for you to be readmitted, you have to establish these things’ is unthinkable”.

The Minister further related that they are going to examine the company with regards to its operations and working conditions. Ally posited that the company should reinstate the workers first and then issues surrounding the Labour Department will be dealt with.

 

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