Who we are
NUBE is your trade union, established as a legal entity under the Trade Union Act 1959. As a member, you belong to a caring fraternity of bank workers committed to fight for better conditions and prospects for each member of the Union. NUBE is a non-profit organisation.
The main goal of NUBE, Malaysia’s third largest union, is to improve the working lives of its 20,000 or so members in the banking and financial institutions of Peninsular Malaysia. It has a track record of serving, protecting and providing for its members within the industry for over 50 years. When you are facing a problem at your work place, as a member of NUBE, you are never alone. Every other NUBE member stands in solidarity with you and will fight for you. We believe in two fundamental principles: Every human being has an equal right to live the life that he or she desires. Employers and the government are both essential to regulate the lives of every workman.
Our primary responsibilities
- Organize and recruit employees in the banking and financial institution in Peninsular Malaysia as members of NUBE.
- Advice and represent our members at their respective workplace.
- Help our members to understand and defend their rights at their place of employment.
- Negotiate with employers’ organizations to regulate the employer/employee relationship, secure monetary benefits and terms and condition of employment.Represent our victimized members at labor and industrial redress platforms, industrial courts and even higher courts on points of employment law or principles.
- Educate our members and their families about fundamental human rights.
- Publicist to our members and to the community issues of concern and encourage them to actively participate in addressing these issues.
- Constantly evolve in our knowledge and administration in order to effectively function as a trade union.
- Provide our members and their families a range of services on more advantageous provisions.
- Endeavor to provide our members remuneration that commensurate with the responsibility members shoulder at work, improve the quality of their lives by regulating the relations between employers and our members and adjust any differences between them by amicable and conciliatory means and protect their health and safety at workplace.
‘We never see the sun. Our children grow up not knowing who their fathers are.’
Just like the independence of our country, a two months contractual bonus, overtime, salary increase and every other benefit we enjoy today was not given free by the Banks. In the late 1950′s, our forefathers sacrificed their income, time and lives to secure what we enjoy currently.
In 1989, we had to strike in sarongs without pay during negotiations to get a salary increase. The Banks told us then that the price of nasi bungkus (packed rice) was so cheap that even a trishaw puller could afford a packet.
Today, 50 years later although we continue to enjoy these benefits but we cannot take them for granted. In this modernized era where globalization and free trade in the popular jargon, the rights won through honest and dedicated fight will be whisked away if we do not stand together to protect and improve them. We must continue the tradition. We must fight, protest and campaign for what is rightfully ours.In the late 1940s and early 1950s, bank workers were subjected to harsh working conditions, enslaved by management commands. They had to work until about 8 pm or 9 pm almost every night, without overtime pay. On month ends, they had to work past midnight.
In Chartered Bank, Ipoh, the workers stayed back till past midnight on normal days. On month ends, they slaved until 4 am and after a short nap, they resumed work again at 7 am.
They worked like this every day, seven days a week. Our founder, the late Bro. Pathrose Cruz Gomez (P. C. Gomez) used to say very often when he was exhorting bank workers to form the union: “We never see the sun. Even our children grow up not knowing who their fathers are.”
Before the formation of NUBE, bank employees were represented by State Clerical and Administrative Sta” Union (SCASU). SCASU represented workers in Penang, Perak,Selangor, Negeri Sembilan and Malacca. Subsequently, the Malayan Federation Clerical And Administrative Staff Union(MFCASU) was formed. However, MFCASU was ineffective in its functioning and could not do much to improve working conditions in banks. Bank workers naturally felt a need for a better representation for their plight.
This led to the bank workers to combine forces with the Insurance and Commercial Sector to form the National Union of Commercial Workers (NUCW). The banking section of NUCW dealt with Banks individually and gave the earliest recognition to bank employees. Though problems persisted, bank employees gained strength and support. The postwar spirit was in the air and the value of independence was emerging and spreading.
Bro. Pathrose Cruz Gomez and his colleagues seized this opportunity to form an independent union. In November 1958,the National Union of Bank Employees (NUBE) came into being,and MFCASU was deregistered. However, there were still bank employees registered with NUCW. In 1960, all Bank employees membership of NUCW was transferred to NUBE.That was when NUBE became the sole representative union of all clerical and non-clerical bank employees in Peninsular Malaysia.
‘One for All, All for One.’
Sandagran Solomon Joseph Pitchay, better known as J Solomon, is NUBE’s 9th General Secretary.
He was first appointed as General Secretary on 19 July 2001 and was re-elected as General Secretary on 7 August 2005.
J Solomon leads a team of aspiring leaders who undertake to:-
Recruit and organise workers in the banking and financials institutions in Peninsular Malaysia. Provide better support and services to members and assist in improving the quality of their lives both at home and the workplace. Protect and improve the rights of members in industrial matters that affect their lives.
J Solomon often says, “I am devoted to building our strength wide across our industry and nation. I am devoted to helping every employee in banking and financial institutions in Peninsular Malaysia to work with dignity and by creating awareness of his or her fundamental principles and rights at work. I am devoted to bringing forth active participation from every member for a greater NUBE.
“NUBE is ours, I can’t do it alone, together we secure our future, enforce our rights and obtain remuneration that commensurates with our responsibilities.
“Together we build ‘Our’ NUBE”.