Windhoek-The country’s largest workers’ federation, the National Union of Namibian Workers (NUNW), says its biggest worry is the country’s current economic situation, which it says looks “grim”.
Addressing the media yesterday, secretary general of the NUNW Job Muniaro said the economic situation of country is worrisome and workers in various sectors are feeling the pinch.
“We are calling upon government and all employers in particular to involve the working class through the federation being in policy formulations, budgetary process to enable to formulate clear policies as to how the economy should be structured,” he said.
Muniaro says in the current economic difficulties, workers are left with more questions than answers and this has become very worrisome.
Some of the worries of the workers centre on job insecurity; compromises on decent work standards that have implications for workers’ rights; the lack of jobs and the question of food security.
The NUNW and its affiliates as critical social partners are committed and ready for engagement by government to collectively address the economic situation.
“Workers strongly believe that being the drivers of the economy, we need to be part of each process that leads to the growth of our economy, therefore it is high time that the government takes cognisance of that and regards workers of this country as social partners and an integral part of its structure,” he stressed.
“The NUNW must be part of every process, in order to ensure that social and economic justice for all workers is secured and strives for a just standard of Iiving, social security and fair working conditions in all sectors of Namibian society,” he added.
According to Muniaro, by involving the working class through the NUNW, its federation and or affiliates, government will allow the democratic control of production and fair sharing of the fruit of labour amongst the working people.
Moreover, the other issue that is bothering the NUNW leadership, Muniaro said, is the rate at which workers in the construction sector are losing their jobs.
“The most disturbing observation is that multi-international companies are retrenching workers to maximise their profits,” he said, adding that the federation is cautioning those who engage in such practices.
On a positive note, Muniaro congratulated the country’s teachers for the good work they put in during both the external and internal 2016 examinations.
“We are proud of the good work which you are rendering under very difficult circumcises at some schools wherever you find yourself,” he said.
“Keep up the good work and we would like you to improve for the good of our country,” he added.
He further congratulated government on introducing free primary and secondary education and said the move has accommodated many learners that would not otherwise attend school due to financial difficulties their parents have found themselves in.
“We know that free education has touched the pocket of the government severely, yet there is much we need to do.”