Eight workers at Misr Spinning in Mahalla have been victimised by management and accused of leading the two-week long strike which took place in the Egyptian textile town at the beginning of August. Thousands of workers in the state-owned spinning mills and garment factories which make up the Misr Spinning complex went into occupation in protest at delayed payment of bonuses and other grievances related to pay. After two weeks on strike, workers decided to suspend their action, in order to give local MPs who promised to work towards the implementation of their demands the chance to negotiate with management.
On 9 September, Misr Spinning management suspended two women (Wala’a Mohamed Abd-al-Ra’uf and Nagwa Sa’ad Abd-al-Qadir) and four men (Mohamed Al-Sayyed Misbah, Amru Rifa’at Salama, Amir Gamal Hassan and Karim Hossam Isma’il) from work and reported them to the police on charges of “incitement to strike”, and “obstructing work”. Another worker, Yasser Fahmi has been forcibly transferred to Alexandria, while administrator Tala’at al-Umari has had his pay docked. The company has also delayed payment of workers’ September pay packets. Meanwhile, riot police remain deployed across the town in a bid to pre-empt further protests.
However, there are also signs that the strike has put management under severe pressure: a new company chairman was appointed on 11 September, along with a new team of managers heading the different sections of the company.
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