INDUSTRY

IndustriAll : constant struggle for mining and textile workers in Madagascar

 

Mining and textile industries are the driver of Madagascar’s economic development but an economic growth is nothing if attained through precarious working conditions of involved employees. In order to offer a decent working environment for Malagasy employees in the two sectors, « A lot is still to do in Madagascar » said Paule Ndessomin from IndustriAll Global Union federation.

 

 

Traumatic working condition

 Present in 140 countries, IndustriAll Global Union is intimately concerned with the behaviour of companies toward its employees.  For this global union federation, companies are « accountable » to their human resources that’s why its main  goal is  to improve working conditions of all its 50 millions members in 16 industrial sectors around the world. Its 4 affiliates in Madagascar with the support of Friedrich Ebert Stiftung has concluded in its report the evidence of a constant struggle for malagasy workers to get adequate  medical treatment or safety fittings.

 

Ambatovy – QMM : fall down of mining sector ?

 The promise of a massive recruitment is now fading. In the beginning, Ambatovy hired 18 000 people and QMM  4 500 workers. In 2015, numbers are now below 50 %, 9 000 for Ambatovy and 1 800 for QMM. Compared to the initial investment of those 2 major companies which attained 8 billions $,  this total payroll is insufficient. Due to the falling of commodity prices, national consultant observed low-justified dismissal of employees as financial data is also unavailable for industrial unions to proove the real economic situation of the company.

 

Duty-free zone : 15 companies in total violation of labour legislation.

 Exporting to Europe, United States and Asia, 126 textile companies in industrial free zone were analyzed by IndustriAll. Those companies are altogether employing 65 765 people from disadvantaged families of which half is composed of single women. Violation of labour law takes the form of multiple repetition of fixed-term contract for example but 15 companies are in total infrigement of employees right : salary under the minimum recommended wage, exessive working hours and non – affiliation of employes to the CNAPS (National Social Security Fund ).

 The « target » principle applied by textile companies to determine wage  policy is always source of internal conflicts. Functionning on performance, targets are generally hard to attain by the employee which leads to disciplinary sanctions, contract termination or unpaid extra hours.   

 

Recommendation

 Madagascar needs a strong labour union to address the issue of safety and wellness of workers  in mining and textile sectors. Lists of occupationnal injuries determined in 1968 should also be reviewed and adjusted to be in compliance with the current progress of technology and newly discovered diseases related to today’s professionnal environment.  

 

Published on Thursday, 28 April 2016 14:36
Written by F. RAFIDIHARINIRINA