Union tribunal on hold

Lae News, Normal


THE Arbitration Tribunal in Lae on the industrial dispute between the PNG Maritime and Transport Workers Union and the Mountain Transport has been restrained from holding its hearing. 
The Employers Federation and the Mountain Transport yesterday served the court order on chairman Pex Arosa and PNG Trade Union Congress general secretary John Paska.
The court order left the general secretary of PNG Maritime and Transport Workers Union, Reg McAlister, “absolutely disgusted”, the union said.
The tribunal was hearing the log of claims against Mountain Transport Limited regarding workers’ wages and conditions and the alleged unlawful termination of an employee Paul Nomda.
According to Mr McAlister, the lawyer representing the Employers Federation and Mountain Transport had told the tribunal that they would not obtain any restraining order against the tribunal stopping it from hearing the case. 
“The Employers Federation and Mountain Transport have deliberately lied and deceived the tribunal and have treated it with utter contempt and disrespect,” he said.
“From day one, they attempted to sabotage the tribunal even though the tribunal assured them of their rights and powers.
“The Employers Federation has been totally dishonest in its dealings and assurances to the tribunal,” Mr McAlister said.
“It is simply a slap in the face for the tribunal,” Mr Arosa added.
“There is very little we can do since there is a court order against us and if we continue, that would be contempt of court,” Mr Paska said.
According to Mr Arosa, the matter will be adjourned until further consultation with a state solicitor and the Industrial Registrar.
“This is an industrial forum so we will come back and deal with it,” he said.