Group of ex-employees of SLI demand their jobs


By Dasun Edirisinghe

A group of former employees of Sri Lanka Insurance (SLI) began a protest in front of its headquarters at Vauxhall Street, Colombo, yesterday requesting the authorities to reinstate them, claiming that they were forced out of their jobs.

 An organiser of the protest said they were going to turn the protest into a fast-unto-death if the authorities, including Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake did not respond positively to their request by Friday.

 "After the SLI was privatised some years ago, the top management was filled with ex-military officers. Our employees were made to follow stringent rules. Many of them were mistreated and forced to retire early. Then in 2009, following a case we filed, the Supreme Court ordered it to be taken back by the government. Since then we are fighting to get back our jobs," one protestor explained.

"If we don’t get a solution to our problem from the present government, we have no other option but to turn this protest into a hunger strike," the protestor said.

"We began this protest after holding talks with all the relevant parties. What we demand is only our jobs. There are less than 200 who have been victimised. All of them have a minimum of eight-years working experience at SLI. The officials turn a blind eye to our request with, while there being over 600 vacancies in the company at present," he said.

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