Friday, October 12, 2012

RUM strongly opposes MMC's attempt to take over KTMB

Hundreds picket against tycoon's KTMB takeover bid
  • Koh Jun Lin
  • 7:36PM Oct 12, 2012
Over 500 railway workers picketed at the Keretapi Tanah Melayu Bhd (KTMB) headquarters in Kuala Lumpur today to protest MMC Corp Bhd's bid to take over the company.
MMC Corp is controlled by business tycoon Syed Mokhtar al-Bukhary, who also owns Seaport Terminal (Johor) Sdn Bhd, which took over Penang Port.

Besides this, Syed Mokhtar also controls the Port of Tanjung Pelepas and Johor Port as well as took over Pos Malaysia via DRB Hicom.

The group, led by Railwaymen's Union of Malaya (RUM) leaders, chanted slogans, sang songs, and held up banners for over an hour beginning 5.30pm, almost always under the blare of their air horns.

NONE"RUM strongly opposes MMC's attempt to take over KTMB," the group chanted, while also urging new KTMB president Elias Kadir to be given the chance to turn around the loss-making company.

About 30 police officers - some of whom were uncharacteristically armed with combat weapons - kept close watch and helped to direct traffic until the protest ended peacefully.

In his speech, RUM president Abdul Razak Md Hassan said MMC’s takeover would threaten the workers’ welfare benefits in its cost-cutting measures, such as affordable housing, bonuses, and medical care.

NONEHe pointed out that KTMB already loses between RM150 million to RM200 million annually, and is bound to lose more money under the 2013 Budget, which calls for a discount for passengers earning below RM3,000 a month.

“That means we are losing money. What is MMC’s true motive for taking over a loss-making company?” he asked.

At a press conference later, Abdul Razak also questioned MM’'s ability to maintain KTMB’s role as a public service provider, especially in view that its fares are below market price, MMC is a profit-seeking company and the government’s pledge to give discounts.

He estimated the crowd at about 800 people, hailing from ten RUM branches throughout the peninsula.

Also present to show solidarity and give speeches today were Malaysian Trades Union Congress president Khalid Atan, Uni Global Union Malaysian Liaison Committee president Shafie Mammal, Kuala Langat assemblyperson Abdullah Sani Abdul Hamid, and Penang senator Syed Shahir Syed Mohamud. 

No comments:

Post a Comment