Trade union terrorism
This refers to the news report titled, "Now JVP threatens to cripple water and power supplies" and the timely editorial headlined "defeat trade union terrorism" in The Island of Oct.26.
The JVP has a history of engineering strikes in the public sector institutions, such as the CTB, CEB, Water Board, Petroleum Corporation etc., thus bringing the general public to great inconvenience. These strikes directly affect the productivity of the economy of the country. The loss of revenue to the government running into millions per strike day affects the other public utilities, like education, health and development schemes.
It is reported, according to a collective agreement between the trade unions and the government, a salary increment must be given once in three years. Since the CEB had received the last increase in January 2006, they must get the next increase now and if not received they will launch a major protest campaign involving 27 unions. This means the JVP is hell bent on destroying the public institutions through strikes.
Whatever the collective agreements between the trade unions and the government may be, it is prudent to consider whether the statutory board employees from the General Manager/Director down to the lowest rung employee are under paid or over paid. What this writer understands is that all the employees referred to herein are highly paid when their salaries and perks are compared with those of the vast number of public servants in all the other government departments. Therefore, this water’s contention is that a salaries commission must be appointed to look into this grave injustice of perpetuating a salary disparity between the statutory bodies and other government departments.
The present day cost of living is very high indeed. It has affected not only statutory body employees but also the rest of the general public. Unless the entire country is developed and per capita income increased, it is wishful thinking to ask for ad hoc salary increases. Therefore, until a salaries commission is appointed and its report obtained no piecemeal salary increases should be effected.
For the information of the general public this writer requests the government to publish the present day salaries and perks of all categories of employees in all the statutory bodies vis-a-vis those of the other services.
The JVP is making a cat’s paw of the trade unions to achieve their political aims by creating chaos in the country. The government must look after the interests of the general public and put a stop to trade union terrorism.
G. A. C. Mayadunne