Addressing an Anti-Privatization Labour Conference held at Mandi Bahauddin arranged by the All Pakistan Federation of United Trade Unions (APFUTU), different workers leaders slammed the idea of privatisation of the PSEs.
Addressing the participants, Pirzada Imtiaz Syed, Muhammad Naveed, Imtiaz Shaheen, “We are gathered here to protest against the privatization project which the government is bent on going ahead with.” he said,s over a decade ago the APFUTU had denounced the government’s practice of taking loans from the IMF and other international organizations. He said,s they had predicted back then that the government would sell off state-owned firms to pay off the debts. They said even parties that promised “roti kapra makaan” had kept on taking loans. “Then came the right-wing parties which sought to divide the country along sectarian lines…They created social fissures and deepened the class divide.”
APFUTU will support public sector workers in their struggle against privatization.
The media tends to cover only political parties led by capitalists or Islamists. “It has turned a blind eye towards the problems of the workers.”
APFUTU government employees Section General Secretary Azam S. Zia-ullah said the Privatization Commission was formed but there wasn’t any consultation with workers who ran the PSEs that are being privatized by the government. “We shouldn’t just limit the struggle against privatization to emotional sloganeering. Privatization represents an ideology under which the government has to be withdrawn and service delivery has to be handed over to the private sector. ”He said that we stood against this ideology and would make the government live up to its responsibility towards the people rather than surrendering them to the private sector and international financial institutions. He said the struggle against privatization was not a struggle against a particular political party. “It’s a struggle against the ruling elite of the country which is represented in all mainstream parties and is supported by the civil and military bureaucracy. ”He said the working people needed to become a political force if they wanted to succeed in their struggle against privatization.
APFUTU organised the seminars 8 cities including Gujrat, Sialkot, Gujranwala, Multan, Fasilabad etc around the country on the call of TUI-PS and WFTU by the international action day against the privatization