So after blogging about the InterCon strike earlier today, it appears to have evoked a statement from a source close to the situation currently unfolding with the t'intercon in Muscat. They've sent me a statement via a third party PR agency and I figured I'd share it with you all, here it is:
A number of Omani employees at the InterContinental Hotel Muscat went on strike on June 10th 2012. This case dates back to March 2011 where a number of employees went on strike and had 11 requests and demands of which all were met and an agreement was signed on May 16th 2011 stating that the employees will not request for additional demands for a period of two years. The agreement was signed by a representative from the Ministry of Manpower, the General Labor Union, the General Manager of the InterContinental Hotel Muscat, a representative from Omran and a representative from the InterContinental Hotel Muscat Labor Union.
Representatives from the Ministry of Manpower visited the hotel on December 12th 2011 to confirm that all parties were abiding by the agreement which entailed increase in salary, health insurance, end of service gratuity, revision of human resource policy structure and adjustments to the pay scale. The hotel management also extended financial assistance to employees who wish to complete their education. In 2011, a 3% increase in wages and increments was awarded.
The hotel management was surprised to recently receive a letter with five demands after which seven meetings were held with the InterContinental Hotel Muscat Labor Union, one of which was with Omran’s Chairman. An agreement was reached and signed on May 23rd 2012. A few days later, the demands increased to a total of 18 and were being reviewed by the hotel management. During this time, a number of the employees went on strike with the knowledge that the act was illegal as per the laws of the Ministry of Manpower and the General Labor Union. The employees also requested that wages are not deducted during the strike days even though it is illegal.
So, these guys signed a document saying they've got what they wanted last year and they won't complain for 2 years... and 1 year later they are at it again. And to put the boot in these staff members are saying they want to get paid while they strike as well?! Madness. It will be interesting to see what the Ministry of Manpower do with this one, hopefully they stick to the agreement signed last year, otherwise I suspect it'll be a short time before the rest of the hotel's in town has staff striking too.