Members of the trade unions Peo and Sek went on a 24-hour port strike over the decision of dispute resolution council to suspend action and refer the issue to arbitration.
Despite an announcement from Sek to its workers to not participate in the industrial action, the workers went on strike, CyBC reported.
Akel-affiliated Peo said the port council had ignored the workers’ positions and warned of sanctions if the decision was not enforced.
Peo said the decision was unprecedented in the labour relations system.
“How is it possible for the renewal of collective agreements and workers’ claims be decided by majority either by bodies like the port work council or arbitration courts,” Peo said.
Christos Christophi said it was the fact that the council had ruled the strike illegal that prompted their reaction.
Sek on the other hand asked its members to show up to work despite their disagreement.
“We support the rights of the workers, we support labour rights, but we must act within the boundaries of the law,” spokesman Pantelis Stavrou said.
The chairman of the council, Limassol district officer Marios Alexandrou, stressed that any strike at the port would be illegal.
Anyone who deviates would be subject to disciplinary proceedings, he added.
Industrial action has become a frequent phenomenon since the Limassol port was taken over by the private sector.
Workers and the employers have differences over certain jurisdictions but there are also disagreements regarding the renewal of collective agreements.