Pandeni Calls for NUNW Unity

NATIONAL Union of Namibian Workers (NUNW) acting president Connie Pandeni has urged unions to unite for the benefit of the workers.

Pandeni made the remarks at the launch of a national collective bargaining campaign by Metal and Allied Namibian Workers Union (Manwu) last week.

She urged other unions to adopt the policy of yesteryear when “an injury to one was an injury to all” and “a people united shall never be defeated”.

“In the real sense of the word, whenever a sister union was in trouble, the rest would rally behind them and ensure a solution is found or justice prevails,” Pandeni said.

Her comments come after years of infighting within the NUNW, which resulted in the unprocedural dismissal of prominent unionist Evilastus Kaaronda, who was suspended and then dismissed without any disciplinary hearing.

Pandeni also urged other affiliate unions to join Manwu in initiating campaigns to spread the call for better working and living conditions of the workers.

“For us these demands are not luxury for the workers who are the producers of wealth. The least employers can do is to give them decent returns for their sweat,” Pandeni said.

During the launch of the campaign, Manwu president, Otto Nahambo said the union will intensify the struggle for a living wage for all, with a special focus on the metal, motor, construction and other sectors in which Manwu has a mandate.

Nahambo said their key objective is to improve and harmonise the wages and conditions of employment for their members in various work places.

“Manwu encourages its members and all workers to continue rejecting low wages,” he said.

Nahambo said this is because their members often turn to loan shacks to make ends meet, which makes their conditions even worse over time. He explained that a living wage should allow workers to afford basic needs such as food, education, health-care, water and electricity, housing and transport.

Source : The Namibian