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‘Need to reconsider some clauses related to labor rights in contracts’

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Meeting discusses strike by workers of cleaning companies

KUWAIT CITY, July 4: The Municipal Council’s Fact-Finding Committee on Cleaning Contracts has recommended the need to reconsider some clauses related to labor rights in the contracts, reports Al- Qabas daily. Following a workshop held one week ago to discuss the reasons behind the sanitation workers’ strike, Head of the committee Eng. Abdulsalam Al-Randi said the concerned authorities were invited to discuss ways to eliminate this phenomenon and to present Kuwait in a civilized manner. He revealed that the main reasons for the strike included lack of adequate housing due to delays in the procedure for allocating the accommodation sites for companies contracting with the municipality.

Eng. Al-Randi said the members listened to the solutions and the emergency plan that was prepared in order to avoid such matters in the future by adopting a fixed plan in the event of repetition of such strikes in the future. Meanwhile, one of the members Eng. Maha Al-Baghli explained that the committee held its meeting to verify the reasons behind the strikes of cleaners and to find radical solutions to eliminate this issue with the cooperation of the executive body in Kuwait Municipality, the Public Authority for Manpower, the State Audit Bureau and representatives of the relevant cleaning companies.

The most important observations and problems that were raised by the cleaning companies are the delay of some parties in offering new tenders, which has caused a stumble in the transfer of laborers from old contracts to the new ones, and the delay in labor files in PAM. There is also a problem in requesting the allocation of housing sites for laborers, which has led to companies faltering in receiving sites and executing contracts. The committee concluded that there should be a liaison officer between the government agencies, the contracting authority, and PAM in order to avoid problems. Officials in the authority affirmed that their offices are open and ready to extend a helping hand to the companies facing difficulty in transferring their workers due to the conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic or any other reasons.

Eng. Al-Baghli revealed that the committee has decided to hold workshops on three main topics regarding the employment problem, as well as a workshop to develop cleaning contracts in light of the remaining period of the current contracts, which amount to about 18 months, adding, “We need to put forward our observations on the current contracts in order to avoid problems in the future contracts”.

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