Report by Majed Azaan from Aden (South Yemen)
In Aden teachers taking strike action were threatened by visits from the Education Monitoring body, which weaken the teachers who are taking action and sending signals to prevent non-strikers from joining their colleagues. The teachers were employed at the last period of Saleh’s rule, he was trying to give something to Southerners and keep his grip on power. These teacher were employed on a flat rate of pay which has not risen. Young people in Aden are also campaigning to ban carrying and the use of weapons in Aden city, following a number of accidental deaths during wedding celebrations and revenge shootings. Meanwhile the Water Department workers are continuing with their walkouts against their corrupt bosses.
In a separate event, striking water worker, Hussain Al-Uzibi, a father of six children, was shot dead by the UAE-funded forces known as the Security Belt in the province of Lahaj, 45 minutes away from Aden at the Well of Nasir which supplies the city with water. In an attempt to break the strike, the security forces were looking to arrest head engineer and well manager Wadah Haidra who was accused of leading the strike following orders from the boss of the Department of Water in Aden. The workers’ demands include fair pay and overtime payments, and further strikes are planned.
Petrol Masila workers have also protested against a 75 percent cut in their wages. They demonstrated outside the temporary government buildings of Mansour Hadi’s administration in Aden. The company’s pay cuts only targeted workers from Aden and the South while workers from the Yemeni capital Sana’a were not affected. Health workers at the Prosthetic Department are demanding contracts as they have been employed as temporary workers for years. The main issue is the corruption, with budgets being mysteriously siphoned away, affecting not only the workers only but also the patients who have disabilities.
Report by Khalid Bilhaj from Hadramaut (South Yemen)
The teachers protested outside the Department of Education and the local government of the province, following a strike during the exam period this year. During last year’s examinations period the teachers were attacked by outside forces that broke into the school during exams. They attacked teachers and disrupted and vandalised the school. The breach of security allowed some students to cheat. The teachers put a complaint regarding this but nothing happened. This year they took strike action during the examinations time. Management has retaliated by cutting their wages by 40 percent. However the strike has also forced the Department of Education to announce the creation of a committee to investigate and look at their complaint.