A total of 17 people working at the Larnaca port have been on strike since 7am on Monday in protest to the repeated layoffs carried out by Kition Ocean Holdings, the company overseeing the operations at the port.
The issue at stake is the impasse on the negotiations for the renewal of the collective agreement between unions Peo and Sek and the company.
“While the process of negotiating and concluding a collective labour agreement is pending and requests have been submitted, Kition Ocean Holdings is not responding to the workers’ requests,” a joint statement released by the unions said.
“In addition to that, the company is acting vindictively, as the layoffs are in stark opposition to the industrial relations code and fail to respect the freedom of the workers and their unions.”
The statement then added that issue is even more serious, as it involves a workplace that manages public property.
“The striking workers are only demanding that the retaliatory dismissals be immediately revoked and that a process of negotiating collective bargaining be initiated on the basis of the demands already sent by their unions,” the statement continued.
Peo and Sek further said that the transport ministry is obliged to oversee the smooth operation at the port and that the labour ministry needs to protect the workers’ rights.
“The government, the local authorities and, more in general, the people of Larnaca, cannot accept for the rights of the workers at the port to be violated,” the unions concluded.