Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) workers affected by the no work, no pay rule of the just-ended strike, will get a ‘soft loan’ from the Public Service Union of Namibia (PSUN) to help them get through the month.
PSUN deputy secretary general Ujama Kaahangoro said this last week when some NBC employees met with the union leadership to assist workers who did not get paid this month after they agreed to go on a strike with the condition of no work no pay.
He said the union has availed N$200 000 through its credit and saving cooperative, a business arm of the union which was established to “drive members out of poverty” and the money will be shared among NBC employees who were striking. They will qualify for the loan immediately after they sign up to be members of the union. The union will relax some rules that will allow the members to qualify as a matter of urgency.
“Seeing the situation that NBC employees find themselves in, it is something the union did not hesitate to come to for their rescue. So we thought of setting aside the little that we have to help them get through this month until next month when they get paid. These people have families to feed, they have transport to pay to get to work and they have children that have to go to school,” said Kaahangoro.
He added that normally when a member joins the union, they have to wait six months to qualify for the loan, but in this case the union will scrap that rule because the workers are in dire need of help.
One of the NBC workers who attended the meeting, McCarious Somaeb, said he is disappointed with the Namibia Public Workers Union (Napwu), the union representing NBC employees, for the failed negotiations for salary increments with NBC management and has now terminated his membership with the union.
NBC employees were on strike for five weeks and the strike only ended this week after Napwu called it off while also withdrawing the court case it launched against NBC for breaching of strike rules.