Statement by The Egyptian Democratic Trade Unions Congress (EDTUC)
On Thursday October 26 2017, The Egyptian Democratic Trade Unions Congress (EDTUC)
hold its first meeting in order to develop its activities after its launching on the 25th of October.
The meeting examined the events of last week that witnessed the beginning of discussions regarding the law about trade unions in the labor force committee of the Parliament. Participants expressed their concerns about the rumors and news circulating around the ongoing debates and the two draft laws presented by both the government and the “governmental” General Federation of Egyptian Workers’ Trade Unions.
At the end of the meeting, participants confirmed the following points:
- The two draft laws presented as well as the trajectory of discussions in the labor force committee will lead to blowing away trade union freedoms, prevent the formation of trade unions independent from governmental hegemony, and deprive Egyptian workers from freely establishing their organization;
- The Congress refuses to acknowledge what is referred to as the “initiatives of reconciliation” unfortunately conducted by those pretending to represent independent trade unions. Actually, these “initiatives” are nothing but an attempt to affiliate these trade unions to the governmental Federation simultaneously with the repeated coercive measures taken against them beginning with the ban from implementing their activities and collecting the membership fees of their members reaching the stage of transferring, firing and imprisoning their leaders;
- In front of these attempts to deprive independent trade unions from any means of survival as a preparatory step for the enactment of a repressive law, the Congress address a call to all independent unions, members and activists worldwide to reconfirm the principles of freedom and the integral right of Egyptian workers in freely establishing their trade unions as well as coordinating together to adopt a common stand in front of the two draft laws and request a law securing these rights and freedoms;
- The Congress insist particularly on the second article of the two draft laws related to the modalities of establishment representing the poison projected to be used in order to prevent the existence of independent trade unions;
- The Congress members reiterate that they are not agents of discord but are rather callers for trade union freedom,aligned with everything capable of promoting and strengthening collective work and cooperation provided it is based on a free choice. In the same time, they strongly refuse to become the auxiliary of the governmental Federation under the fallacious pretext of unity;
Aware of the dangerous moment we are experimenting before the enactment of an unjust law, The Egyptian Democratic Trade Unions Congress (EDTUC) declares its readiness to coordinate and work jointly with all trade unions and concerned parties who are in line with the inalienable principles of trade unions’ freedoms while kept untouched and safe in their autonomy and structures. Therefore, we call all independent trade unions and their members to stop immediately any kind of quarrel or mutual accusations and to adopt a common position in front of the new law to be passed and refuse categorically the attempts of affiliating them to the governmental Federation.
Together for a law fulfilling the right of Egyptian workers to freely establish their independent trade unions without any kind of constraints.
Thursday October 26 2017