Council workers issue 28 days strike threat
Honiara City Council (HCC) direct employees who are members of the Workers Union Solomon Islands (WUSI) have issued a 28 days strike notice to the administration of the city council yesterday.
The 28 days strike notice which became effective as of yesterday was issued after WUSI held a secret ballot yesterday morning.
The secret ballot saw 221 votes out of the total 224 voted in favour of the strike notice.
Direct employees of the council included the works division, law enforcement officers, market staff and those involved in other services.
In a letter addressed to the the Honiara City Clerk Charles Kelly, WUSI General Secretary Tony Kagovai said, the strike notice is now effective as of yesterday and will end mid October.
“On behalf of WUSI’s members employed by the HCC, I am submitting to you and copied to the to the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs strike notice as of today (yesterday) and will schedule to lapse on Sunday the 11th of October to be followed by strike action on Monday 12th October 2015”.
Mr.Kagovai stated in the letter that the decision to issue the strike notice was reached during a general meeting of the HCC direct employees who are members of the WUSI.
In the general meeting, Mr.Kasgovai said, the workers have adopted and agreed on two resolutions.
The first resolution reached dictates, that the HCC to take immediate action to regularise the direct employees fortnightly salaries as from the next fortnight pay period which falls on Thursday 24 September 2015”.
The second resolution reached was; for the Ministry of Home Affairs to facilitate an immediate surprise audit of the management of the HCC finance and the involvement of politicians in the administration and management of the HCC finance particularly in the collection and disbursement of HCC revenue and the management and financing of HCC contracted jobs.
Mr.Kagovai urged the administration and the Ministry of Home Affairs to address the two isues immediately.
“I believe it is appropriate that I should remind you that as administrative head of the HCC it is within your line of duty and responsibility to ensure that both the political arm and the administrative arm of the HCC and the Ministry of Home Affairs jointly address the subject matters of the above resolutions as a matter to urgency.”
He warned that WUSI and its members have taken the matter seriously and hope HCC administration will work to resolve the dispute.
Early this week members of the direct employees also staged a peaceful protest following delay in their release of their fortnightly salary.
This had affected some of the services such as the rubbish collection which saw tonnes of rubbish being left uncollected along the streets of Honiara and the residential areas.
By BIRIAU WILSON SAENI