By PISAI GUMAR
THE production and maintenance workers from a large industrial company in Lae, Morobe province, had a peaceful sit-in protest yesterday.
A total of 90 employees, mostly men from Amalpack Corrugated Cardboard Packaging, left their posts and held a sit-in protest at their office at SpeyBank Street.
A spokesperson said the two basic reasons of the protest were that an expatriate employee (named), married to a local has been holding on to a position that should have been localised.
The worker added that the expatriate appointed his brother in-law, “who was an ordinary driver”, to hold a management position.
“Such an act has undermined those of us experienced nationals that have been dedicated to serve the company over the years,” he said.
The workers also went on strike last April, demanding 32% salary increase.
After negotiation, the employer promised to pay 28%.
However, the workers said he had since paid 12% only.
He said the employer had notified them to pay the remaining16% “within a year”, meaning at the end of this month.
“There are certain problems we faced like paying our own working boots, eating a packet of Snax for 12 hours and the list goes on,” he said.
“But we do not want to reveal the list of problems affecting us. All we want is the management to fulfil its promise to us for the betterment of us all.”
General manager Tony Wyatt said: “there was nothing to be reported and nothing to do with anybody else”.
“All the employees are fine and everything was solved, that the employees were back at work.”
Amalpack manufactures a variety of cartons that includes printed, regular slotted, die cut, heavy duty, removals, waxed in line, fully waxed, single face wrapping, fruit and vegetable, meat and poultry, bread and pastry, seafood, pizza and spare parts boxes and merchandising and display units.