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8 Aug 2022

Myanmar Labour News

Myanmar: Garment workers from Sagaing & Magway divisions face selective dismissal & denial of permanent contracts

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“Workers are being dismissed from factories with discriminatory reasons”, 8 August 2022

It has been reported...that there has been a continuous occurrence of selective dismissal of industrial workers from their jobs, based on their nationality registration cards (NRC), without a proper reason in local factories.

Another labour rights activist reported that “ A Chinese garment factory called “ZHEJIANG TONGLI CLOTHING(Myanmar)” which is a secondary manufacturer for the H&M brand has been firing over 80 workers holding NRC from Sagaing and Magway regions without any fair compensation fee since the 1st August of 2022.”

According to an official from Federation of General Workers Myanmar(FGWM), the factories have reasoned that they have to dismiss these workers due to the declining rates of product order but ,in fact, these ridiculous dismissals have been intentionally targeted to migrant workers from Sagaing and Magaway regions.

Before these events, there has been residential checking on accommodations of workers from Sagaing region by Junta officials. In ward 16 of Hlaing Thar Yar township, the officials asked for residential verification documents of every household to 'give away rice'. The documents of residents from ward 16 were given back by the officials on 5th of August except for the ones from Sagaing and Magawy regions, who underwent a different process. It has been rumoured that they were not even allowed to stay in their current residence anymore.

“My workplace is at Hlaing Thar Yar. I’m from Magway region. I was fired one day after getting my monthly wage on 5th of August. They say the factories are targeting people from Sagaing and Magway regions. But in the case of our factory, workers from the Rakhine(Arkan) and Irrawaddy regions were also fired although they were only a small portion,“ says a recently fired worker to Myanmar Labour News.

As per the report by the ILO, there has been not only a great number of unreasonable dismissals but also violations of labour rights such as not being contracted, thus working on daily wages which have no guarantee on employment, and not getting their full wage.

There has been a lot of gossip going on social media that factories located in certain townships of Yangon and Mandalay are firing workers with Sagaing region NRC without any viable reason.

Apparently, two factories(TI & EMC) located on No.3 Main Road, Mingalardon township, Alaepout ward have been dismissing workers from those two regions since the 1st of August. Similar cases have been reportedly also occurring in Hlaing Thar Yar township. Furthermore, there are some rumours that two factories in Mandalay are refusing to employ any applicant with Sagaing region NRC…

A source from Junta says that there is no specific plan or order to verify NRC holders from Sagaing and Magway and to dismiss them from work but they have a proposition to carry out check ups and verification on the fleeing refugees from nationwide armed conflicts and political instabilities.

[Translation via Google Translate]