EFP deplores highhandedness of Sindh Labor Department

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Karachi: “The accusations of bad governance by the Sindh government are further amplified by the recent arbitrary and unwarranted decision of the Minister and Secretary of Sindh Labor Department to remove the nominees of the Employers Federation of Pakistan and replace them with hand-picked employers in the SESSI Governing Board. This is a gross violation of the agreement that EFP would have the right to nominate employer representatives not only on the Board of SESSI but also on Boards of Workers Welfare Fund, Minimum Wages, and Sindh EOBI”. This hard-hitting statement was made by Ismail Suttar, President Employers Federation of Pakistan in response to the latest notification issued by Sindh Labor Department.

Ismail Suttar stated that EFP played the stellar role in organizing, along with Workers and Government, the first Sindh Tripartite Labor Conference in December 2017 where the then-President of EFP had proposed a new structure for the four labor welfare Boards and where there was a consensus among all three stakeholders. In fact, after the Sindh Assembly passed the relevant law, the new Boards were constituted of four representatives each from Employers and Workers and two from Government. Moreover, EFP wrote the entire first Sindh Labor Policy which was unanimously approved by Workers and Government.

“The bureaucracy in SESSI etc. are afraid of accountability and have avoided presenting audited accounts as well as exhibiting a transparent attitude. It seems that the Minister and Secretary are also not keen to take action against these officers for reasons best known to them. EFP has also written to the Sindh Chief Minister to take cognizance of this sordid environment in SESSI and other labor welfare Boards so that the contributions given by employers for the benefit of workers are protected and justly disbursed instead of pilferage, corruption and waste by officers of these institutions”, he further said.

Ismail Suttar also warned that if EFP nominees are not accommodated and the new SESSI Board notification not rescinded, then EFP will not have any alternative but to withdraw from all labor welfare Boards as well as all tripartite Standing Committees etc. This information would also be conveyed to the Federal Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development, ILO Islamabad Office and NAB.