Bank workers' union claims festival aid deal falls short compared to last year

NUBE raises alarm over unfair festival aid agreement for bank employees

KOUSALYA SELVAM
KOUSALYA SELVAM
09 Apr 2024 03:42pm
NUBE has expressed concern over what it perceives as an unfair deal for bank employees in this year's festival aid agreement compared to the previous year's terms.- FILE PIX
NUBE has expressed concern over what it perceives as an unfair deal for bank employees in this year's festival aid agreement compared to the previous year's terms.- FILE PIX
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SHAH ALAM - The National Union of Bank Employees (NUBE) has expressed concern over what it perceives as an unfair deal for bank employees in this year's festival aid agreement compared to the previous year's terms.

In a statement, the union has claimed that the Human Resources Minister Steven Sim Chee Keong had not acted in favour of the employees and was not a neutral and objective third party.

“The Industrial Relations Act 1967 clearly states that the Minister’s role is to act as a neutral and objective third party that conciliates a trade dispute.

“However, the action of the Minister is contrary to the law and the principles of the reconciliation which they have been assigned to adhere to since the Act was enacted.

“If the Minister inadvertently made a mistake and he amends the mistake, NUBE is willing to look past the regrettable incident," it said.

NUBE acknowledged that while errors can occur, especially with the Sim being relatively new to his position, continuing to misuse his role could set a negative example for the entire workforce and government operations.

The union warned that lack of action by the Human Resources Ministry might give the impression that laws apply differently to ministers than to the general public.

"The inaction of the Human Resources Ministry might cause an impression that the laws are only applied to regular people but not the Ministers,“ said NUBE.

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NUBE's dissatisfaction stems from a recent issue where the union felt bypassed in decisions regarding Hari Raya aid for bank employees.

Secretary-General J. Solomon accused Steven of unethical and secretive negotiations with MCBA, ignoring an existing agreement that included NUBE and aimed to ensure employees received support during major festivals.

Sim has yet to confirm or deny the meeting.

Nube said their claims are based on internal bank documents sent to staff.

These circulars reportedly directly thank the Minister for his involvement in the negotiations.

NUBE also added that the circulars were issued just five days after a mediation meeting between them and the employer association, MCBA, failed to reach an agreement.

The Industrial Relations Department allegedly oversaw the meeting.

Sinar Daily is in the midst of contacting Sim for comments.