Home News Baldia Factory Fire Incident: ILO blamed of unilateral decisions

Baldia Factory Fire Incident: ILO blamed of unilateral decisions

Baldia Factory Fire Incident: ILO blamed of unilateral decisions

Heirs and trade union leaders reject ILO Pact with an insurance company regarding compensation money given by a German brand.

Sindh Courier


Blaming the International Labor Organization (ILO) of taking unilateral decision, the heirs of the deceased workers of Baldia factory fire incident said Wednesday that ILO didn’t consult with them before deciding the insurance pact.

Heirs and trade union leaders reject ILO Pact with an insurance company regarding compensation money given by a German brand.

Addressing a joint press conference, the leaders of the Association of Affectees of Baldia factory fire, National Trade Union Federation Pakistan, PILER, Home Based Women Workers Federation, Human Rights Commission of Pakistan and SITE Labor Forum said that the ILO took a unilateral decision without taking the real party of Baldia factory fire in confidence. They said that the interests of labors would be safeguarded at all costs.

Muhammad Siddique, Hussina Khan, Nasir Mansoor, Karamat Ali, Asad Iqbal Butt, Zehra Khan and Riaz Abbasi said that the general body meeting of Association of the Affectees of Baldia factory fire was held in Karachi on Sunday in which important decisions were taken.

They said that the heirs of 260 martyrs of Baldia factory fire and dozens of the injured and their supporter local and international labor organizations after a great struggle inked a deal with German brand KIK that agreed to pay a long term compensation of $5.1 million. The representative of KIK had signed the deal in 2016, with workers organizations under ILO, All Global and Clean Cloth Campaign and the funds were given to ILO Geneva office.

They said that under this deal an oversight committee was formed at Pakistan level to distribute these funds and take care of the related issues with representation of the government, labor organizations, heirs and factory owners. The heirs demanded that as per the deal the compensation funds should be brought to Pakistan and invested with mutual consultation to ensure lifelong assistance of the heirs and affectees. In this regard the association of the heirs and laborer organizations in consultation with noted Pakistani lawyers shared an investment plan with the ILO, but the ILO didn’t respond.

They said that sadly the ILO while violating the deal and despite repeated demands of the heirs kept the compensation funds for last five years and distributed monthly compensation amongst the heirs through SESSI. Hence, a big chuck of these funds was spent and the heirs and stakeholders were not informed about it. They said that the ILO is responsible for all this.

The trade union leaders said that the ILO didn’t play any role in helping the affectees. It ignored the demands of the heirs and stakeholder labor organizations and took unilateral and non-transparent decisions and implemented them.

They said that the ILO convened a meeting on December 15 when a member of the oversight committee and patron of the association of the affected workers was hospitalized for treatment of cancer, another member Nasir Mansoor was abroad and the third member Karamat Ali was ill. They were requested to postpone the meeting but in vain. In this meeting the ILO ratified a contract with an insurance company, which had already been signed before the meeting without consultation with the stakeholders who were not told about this contract. The ILO had no right to sign a deal about the funds of the heirs without consultation with them in this non transparent manner. After this non transparent deal some officials of the ILO Karachi office with help of a SESSI employee are harassing the heirs and forcing then sign some documents written in English language. This act has created unrest among the heirs of the martyred workers.

They said that after the international agreement between the German brand and labor organizations, the Sindh government and the Labor Department are the essential parties of the contract and through them the payment of monthly compensation through SESSI was started. However, the labor department failed to play its due role and didn’t take all the members of the oversight committee in confidence.

They said that the contract with the insurance company before the meeting of the oversight committee and without any consultation is the worst example of non-transparency and an attack on the basic and democratic right of the heirs.

They demanded to the ILO should invest the compensation funds after the consultation with the heirs and stakeholder labor organizations.

They asked to summon a meeting of the oversight committee and all documents including that of the deal with the insurance company should be shared with its members.

They demanded that the ILO Karachi office should stop harassing the heirs, otherwise, a protest would be held outside the office.

They asked the SESSI commissioner to start probe against their employ Maroof for forcing the heirs to sign some unknown papers. They asked to hold responsible those officers who caused decrease in the original compensation funds.

They demanded the Compensation Commissioner to decide the gratuity cases of the deceased workers of the West. They asked to ensure EOBI pension to the parents of the martyred workers in the light of the decision of Sindh High Court. They asked to stop the selling of the affected factory and instead erect a symbol there in the memory of the martyred workers.



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