25 September, 2012Embattled workers at oilfield services company Schlumberger in Egypt have struggled to exercise their right to organize since April 2011, in face of strong union-busting by management. In spite of considerable obstacles the enterprise-level union has just launched its own website and continues to push for workers’ rights.
Visit the new website here: http://schlumbergereeg.com/
Schlumberger is the world’s largest oil field services company and employs around 2,500 workers in Egypt, 40% of whom are workers of subcontractors at 10 different worksites.
In the first week of the company-level trade union’s existence Egyptian management summarily sacked the union’s democratically elected General Secretary, Mohamed Abd El Rahman, President Brother Essam, and Assistant General Secretary, Ayman Abd Elmonem. No written explanation was given to the dismissed representatives, they were simply blocked from entering their worksite.
IndustriALL and key affiliated unions in Canada and Norway, the CEP and IndustriEnergi, denounced this mistreatment of workers in Egypt to international management of the French-based company which initially responded with a pledge to investigate the developments fully, but then refused the offer of dialogue in Egypt with a top level delegation from the International.
The dismissed workers rejected a potential offer of financial compensation and continue to push for their reinstatement, while management continues to threaten its employees against joining the union which is affiliated to the new Egyptian Federation of Independent Trade Unions (EFITU) national centre.