Workers at a nitrate company based in Suez continued to protest on Monday in objection to the dismissal of nine workers by a newly appointed company manager.
The workers protested outside the office of the Suez International Nitrate Company (SINCO). Mohamed Zakareya, head of the company workers’ union and one of the dismissed workers, said the nine workers who were dismissed last Thursday include seven people who form the entire board of the union.
Zakareya said that after the weekend, on Sunday, company cars were not sent to pick up a group of 20 workers who were scheduled to work the morning shift in the company. They went to the company at their own expense but were informed by security that the company is on vacation Sunday and Monday.
Company Logistics Manager Ahmed Samir said that after this occurred, the morning shift workers, the dismissed workers, several company managers and workers from other companies and unions in Suez gathered outside the company.
The workers have filed several complaints at the police station detailing these incidents.
After being prevented from working, the union held a general assembly meeting before deciding to stage an open ended sit-in.
Mahmoud Nader, the secretary general of the workers’ union, said the decision to dismiss the nine workers was issued by new human resources manager on Thursday “without any reason”. The Egyptian Centre for Social and Economic Rights (ECESR), a human rights organisation which follows labour issues, added that the workers were dismissed without investigations.
Nader said that there had not been any issues in the company prior to the dismissal of the workers. Both he and Zakareya were critical of new rules and decisions introduced by the new manager, who was appointed on 1 May.
Zakareya said that the new manager was appointed by the company’s administration in Saudi Arabia. SINCO is fully owned by the Saudi Chemical Company.
SINCO could not be reached for comment.