CAIRO: Five workers from the Indorama textiles factory in Shibeen El-Kom, Menufiya, launched a hunger strike on Friday after four were fired and one threatened verbally that his employment will be terminated.
Ihab Shalaby, an Indorama employee, told Daily News Egypt that Ahmed El-Aasar, Ayman El-Seessy, Abdel Aziz Bekhatro and Ahmed Askar have been fired while Samir El-Qazaz has been verbally threatened with dismissal.
The men launched the hunger strike on Friday, and according to one worker contacted by Daily News Egypt are currently in hospital.
The Tadamon activist group reported Monday that they had been prevented from visiting the men in the hospital by security bodies.
The protest is the latest in a series of actions taken by workers since the company s privatization in 2006 against alleged mismanagement and violation of workers rights.
Bekhatro was one of four workers who in May presented a complaint to the Ministry of Manpower against “illegal transfer orders issued against them.
Ragab El-Shimy, Abdel Aziz Bekhatro, Moussa Naggar and Fadel Abdel Fadeel were transferred to Indorama’s warehouse in Alexandria from the company’s Shibeen El-Kom factory after the orders were issued at the beginning of May.
Alexandria is some 150 km away from Shibeen El-Kom and transferred workers say they have not been provided with transport or accommodation.
According to Shalaby three of the men have been fired on the “pretext that they were not performing their duties adequately while Bekhatro was dismissed “because of a misdemeanors conviction in 1991 which expired a long time ago.
Workers allege that the dismissals and transfers are part of a management campaign against workers involved in industrial activity within the factory.
Speaking to Daily News Egypt in May, Indorama s administrative manager Emad Abdel-Khaleq said that the decision to transfer the four workers in May was both because of a need for staff in the Alexandria warehouse and as a disciplinary measure.
He alleged that the four workers were “creating unrest and agitating for other workers to strike.
In March Indorama s 3,000 workers downed tools after company chairman Narinda Malbany refused to grant them an annual bonus paid in March each year.
The 11-day strike – the 96th industrial protest staged by workers since the factory was privatized – ended after management agreed to pay the bonus.