PESHAWAR: The employees of Water and Sanitation Services Peshawar (WSSP) on Wednesday observed strike against delay in payment of their salaries.
The sanitation staff, tube well operators and drivers of the garbage trucks and vans didn’t perform their duties and staged a protest demonstration outside their regional office in Kohati area.
Due to the strike, garbage of the city was not picked. There are around 4,000 employees working in WSSP. A large number of sanitation staff, tube well operators and drivers participated in the demonstration and chanted slogans against the WSSP high-ups.
The protesting employees were addressed by All Municipal Workers Union chairman Riaz Khan, general secretary Abid Sohail and vice-chairman Shakeel Hashim. They said that the provincial government had released salaries to the government servants on November 28, but despite lapse of a week thousands of WSSP employees were not paid their salaries.
Company’s CEO terms the strike unlawful
They said that the sanitation company had released huge salaries of its high-ups, but the lower staff was ignored.
The provincial government has hired many officers for WSSP on high salaries, but they have failed to deliver, the speakers alleged. Prior to establishment of WSSP, they said, the sanitation and water departments of the city were headed by grade-16 officers who would take salaries in the range of Rs60,000 to Rs70,000.
However, for the same work the provincial government has appointed a chief executive officer, four regional managers, including that of operations, projects and human resource and planning, they said, adding that each regional manager also had two assistant managers.
The speakers said that WSSP was facing financial problems due to hiring of high-ups on huge salaries. They said that prior to establishment of WSSP, the sanitation and water services would cost the provincial kitty in millions, which had now increased to billions.
The employees called off their strike when WSSP released their salaries to the regional banks. A big rush of the employees was seen inside and outside the banks as they lined up to get their salaries.
WSSP chief executive officer Engineer Khan Zaib termed the employees’ strike illegal, according to a statement issued here. He stated that it was a violation of the Essential Services Act and disciplinary action would be taken against the protesters.
He said that the employees should have given a prior notice to the company before launching the strike. Mr Zaib claimed that the company had transferred the salaries to the accounts of 75 per cent of employees on November 25. He said that there was a problem in the transfer of salaries to the account of 25 per cent employees which had been transferred successfully on December 4.
Published in Dawn, December 6th, 2018