Parliament suspends 10 workers amid strike

Front view of the South Sudan Legislative Assembly building-File Photo/courtesy

By Bida Elly David

The Transitional National Legislative Assembly has suspended ten of its workers who earlier this month went on sit down strike due to unpaid incentives and neglect by the assembly leadership to address their concerns.

Earlier this month support staff at the National Legislative Assembly peacefully laid down their tools in an attempt to persuade the assembly leadership to grant them their working rights amid six months Accumulated unpaid salary arrears.

This made the administration of the assembly to have an official meeting in which the leadership reached into consensus with the support staff at the assembly over the incentives pay matter and they resumed their normal duties thereafter.

But despite the fact that workers were paid the peanut incentive uniformly despite their grades, the workers said they were not contented with the pay saying they were only returning to work having sent out their message out that they are not being catered for well by the administration.

Speaking to No.1Citizen Daily Newspaper Yesterday, Hon. Peter Lomude, the Chairperson of the standing specialized committee for Constituency Development Fund (CDF) at the National Legislative Assembly confirmed the suspension of the ten members and termed it a wrong decision taken against the support workers.

“The suspension of the 10-working staff from receiving three Months salary by the parliament is a wrong decision since they fought and followed their rights. The decision taken by the secretary general upon suspending these heads of the Union was wrong and unfair” Hon. Lomude opposed the suspension.

He urged the administration to immediately withdraw the suspension of the workers since their salaries could not even reach to some parliamentarians.

“The administration of the parliament should know that they are acting against civil servants and should immediately withdraw the suspension letters. The salaries of those workers can not even be compared to salaries of some people since they also have families to feed’’ Lomude urged the parliament leadership.

In his part, Youhana Wala Juma, the chairperson of the workers Union in the parliament said that he was rated the first person among the 10 suspended workers for having headed the team during the downing of their tools.

He said the deliberate suspension defined them being ring leaders who objected to write explanation letters upon demand by the parliamentary clerk.

“As a staff union, it came into our surprise that some of our members who waged strike over our rights were summoned to give explanation upon our rights. The writer general for the Transitional National Legislative Assembly received communication from our leadership that explanation would not be individualized rather could be done cumulatively but it was disregarded leading to our suspension beginning from me being one of the leaders’’ Wala the Chairperson of the workers union at the parliament revealed their suspension.

The workers’ representative further, said as a registered workers’ union, they were mandated to sit as a team to decide on any matter concerning their day-to-day affairs in the parliament.

He added that upon their suspension, they were nullified from receiving salaries for the interval of three Months and banned from accessing the parliamentary premises with immediate effect.

They promised to forward the matter to South Sudan workers’ Union for further deliberation and demand for more explanation for the suspension from the Clerk of the R-TNLA Mr. Makuc Makuc Ngong.

“Among the suspended was me Youhana Walla Juma, Louis Christopher, Simon Okot, Sunday Joseph, Mohammed Mogga, Emmanuel Keijo, Kennedy Samuel, Kalemntina Poni and Mary Juan’’ He listed some of the suspended staff.

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