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News: Workers observe International Worker’s Day, demand national minimum wage, end to war and assurances for peace

Ethiopian workers raised the high cost of living, national minimum wage, good governance and lack of security at an event in Addis Abeba. Picture: FBC

Addis Abeba – International Workers’ Day is being celebrated in Ethiopia for the 47th time under the motto “Organizing for Peace, Productivity and Livelihoods.” Banners expressing workers’ demands including a national minimum wage, good governance, end to war and assurance for peace, as well as respect for the rights of domestic workers were displayed at the event marking the International Workers’ Day, which will be observed around the word on 01 May.

Employees from various organizations are currently celebrating the day at the Addis Abeba Stadium. Representatives of various workers unions demanded that the government improve the cost of living, improve the wages of workers, enable workers to work in peace, among others, state media reported.

International Labor Organization (ILO) representative Alexo Musindo, raised the pressure workers are facing due to Covid 19 global pandemic and called on the government to protect workers’ rights and safety.

Dr. Yohannes Benti, President of the Ethiopian Teachers’ Association, said the workers could not cope with the high cost of living and that citizens were dying due to lack of peace; he called on the government to respond immediately.

President of the Ethiopian Employers’ Confederation, Tadele Yimer, on his part urged employers to treat their employees with dignity and respect. He also said works were underway to prevent employers that are working to block workers from being organized.

Similarly, Kassahun Follo, President of the Confederation of Ethiopian Trade Unions (CETU), said employers should respect worker’s right to organize as it is part of human right and called on the government to create a stable industry and maintain peace.

Muferiat Kamil, Minister of Labor and Skills, said that the government recognizes that there are still workers’ questions that need to be answered and was reviewing policies and guidelines to answer those questions. The works being done by the government are also aimed at increasing the competitiveness of the workers, she said. AS

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