KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Trade Union Council (MTUC) has urged the government to stop the country's employers' federation from using "bullying and blackmailing tactics" to gain more concessions.
MTUC secretary-general J. Solomon today claimed the warning by Malaysian Employers Federation's (MEF) of an impending retrenchment of at least two million workers after Hari Raya Aidilfitri was a preemptive move to shirk their responsibilities in overcoming unemployment.
"MTUC is shocked over the warning and considers it as a move meant to pressure and even blackmail the government into dishing out more concessions and financial assistance to the business community in exchange for keeping lowly paid workers," Solomon said in a statement today.
He claimed MEF's demands to lower the EPF contributions from 11 per cent to five per cent and for new laws to be enacted to reduce overheads, were also evidence of employers using the pandemic to their benefit.
"MTUC is also against any attempt to force workers into taking pay cuts and reducing their work hours which would greatly impact their livelihood, given that a majority of the workforce are from the B40 and M40 groups who are already paid poor wages which are unsustainable, especially in the present environment."
Solomon described MEF members who were planning to retrench workers after Hari Raya as unconscientious.
"Even after being given billions of ringgit in financial assistance and wage subsidies, these employers are just thinking of their interest.
"It appears that the MEF members have no qualms in sacrificing the welfare and livelihood of thousands of workers so that they can continue to retain their lavish lifestyle.
"It is notable that the MEF has even admitted that as many as more than 600,000 people became unemployed at the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, showing how quick employers are ready to discard workers as a quick fix to retain their profit margins."
He added that the MEF statement that came just a day after Yang DiPertuan Agong's message to employers requesting them to do their best in retaining workers in times of crisis.
"The warning of massive retrenchments is an insolence against the palace, in its (MEF) overzealousness to pander to the selfish needs of its members.
"MTUC strongly urges the government not to allow the MEF's threats and warnings to go unanswered.
"The government must respond and make it clear to MEF that it will not be bullied into giving more concessions that will only increase the sufferings of workers," Soloman said.
He said that the government must also hold MEF accountable and demand full transparency for the billions of ringgit they have been handed to ensure businesses are kept afloat and workers keep their jobs.
"It is high time the government delivers a stern message to employers by introducing Emergency Employment Regulations to save the employers.
"Tell them that it will not allow itself to be pressured into giving more goodies, nor will it stand by idly, and let unscrupulous bosses subjugate employees."
Source : https://www.nst.com.my/…/mtuc-shocked-over-mefs-2-million-r…
KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Trade Union Council (MTUC) has urged the government to stop the country’s employers’ federation from using “bullying and blackmailing tactics” to gain more concessions.