SWAKOPMUND - President Hage Geingob says Namibians should learn and do things properly as constantly being angry does not help in anyway.
Geingob’s silence on the illegal strike of about 1200 seamen at Walvis Bay and Luderitz, that resulted in hundreds of them losing their jobs in 2015 was questioned by a representative of the seamen on Thursday during one of the President’s town hall meetings.
Mathew Lungameni during the town hall meeting on Friday told Geingob the fishermen have endured untold hardships as they cannot provide for their families anymore.
The seamen went on strike in protest at parts of the Labour Act they were unhappy with.
The illegal strike was led by the Namibia National Labour Organisation (Nanlo), an affiliate of the Mining, Metal, Maritime and Construction Union (MMMC).
On the other hand, unions recognised by the fishing industry, such as the Namibia Food and Allied Workers Union (Nafau), Namibia Seamen and Allied Workers Union (Nasawu) and Namibia Fishing Industries & Fishermen Workers Union (NFI) strongly objected and advised the seamen against the illegal strike that consequently led to retrenchments.
“We lost our jobs, our homes and our family are suffering. Even 37 fisherman died so far. Mr. President why are you not helping us,” moaned a frustrated Lungameni.
Since they lost their jobs, the fishermen has been gathering daily at the open space opposite the Kuisebmond Soccer stadium.
Geingob, not impressed by the plea of the seamen said that getting angry will not solve anything asking what he was supposed to do while the strike was illegal.
Geingob went on and explained that there are ways to negotiate a labour dispute in order to reach a mutual understanding instead, if undertaking an illegal industrial action.
“When you had a quarrel with your boss did you come to me and ask for my advice? but you are angry with me. Did you consult me before you strike?…maybe you consulted with the minister. Why do people do things and then get angry with other people?. Please I have to calm you down as I am your ally,” the President assured Lungameni.
Eveline de Klerk
2019-07-24 10:00:46 26 days ago