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Police Seize Company Products, Banners On Labour Day 

By Francis Tim MbomPolice officer seizing bags and other items from a   marching worker

The 2016 Labour Day march past in Limbe was bereft of the usual fanfare that often characterises the event in the past years.

Workers of the different establishments used to march past while showcasing some of the things they produce or make a mock demonstration of what they do in their companies.

But this year’s Labour Day march past was bereft of all these ambiance of yesteryears.
The security forces had been stationed along the Manga William Avenue and they could be seen, from time to time, wrestling with workers in a bid to deprive anyone who had come on to march with a product.
Even women on high heels were stopped from marching. Some were practically shoved off from the lines as they tried to resist, while hand bags and every other item in their hands were seized.

Gabriel Mbene, one of the Trade Union Leaders, said during the planning meeting held with the administration, it was agreed that no company or establishment will march past with any product.
“The simple reason is that the Labour Day is not a trade fair. So, there is no reason for companies to be showcasing their products during the Labour Day.”

Mbene reiterated the call by trade unions in Cameroon for the Government to hands-off the organisation of the Labour Day to trade Unions.

He said the Labour Day is not an event for workers to go on fanfare, but a day for workers to come out and make public their grievances and difficulties they face at their work places. This, he said, will alert the Government and employers to come in with a solution.
“But the celebration of the Labour Day in Cameroon has been hijacked by the Government and workers have no avenue where they can cry out.”

The March Past ceremony was presided at by the SDO of Fako Zang III, who stressed on the need for Trade Unions to continue to sensitize the workers to pursue social dialogue with their employees in the event of any problems at the different work places.

Talking on the theme of the day, the SDO said the promotion of decent work “concerns everybody: the trade unions, the workers, employees and the Government.”
He advocated for more social dialogue, continuous education and sensitisation of workers on their rights to decent work.

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