CTTU to strike despite renewed call for talks

[TamilNet, Thursday, 15 July 1999, 06:20 GMT]
The Ceylon Tamil Teachers' Union (CTTU) has informed its members in the North East province to be ready for a one-day token strike on July 19, inspite of an invitation by the Ministry of Education to CTTU to come for talks with the Deputy Minister on July 21.

Though the CTTU has not turned down the invitation by the Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Education for talks with the Deputy Minister, the General Secretary of the Union Mr.T.Mahasivam said the proposed one-day strike would be held as fixed and the talks with the Deputy Minister of Education would be held later.

The CTTU leadership is of the view that the proposed one-day strike should take place as scheduled, as the education authorities had failed to convene a meeting with the minister or deputy minister before July 19, sources said.

Earlier the CTTU postponed its one-day token strike scheduled for July 2 by two weeks, following talks with the Additional Secretary to the Ministry of Education on June 30.

But the CTTU had alleged that the Additional Secretary failed to honour his undertakings given during the talks held on June 30.

Thereafter the CTTU gave an ultimatum to the Ministry to arrange talks with the minister or his deputy on or before July 14 (Wednesday) to arrive at a settlement in regard to its nine demands.

The Ministry replied to this ultimatum by sending a message by fax on Tuesday (13.07.1999) evening to CTTU inviting it for talks with the newly appointed Deputy Minister on July 21.

Mr.Reginald Cooray is expected to be sworn in as the Deputy Minister for Education today.

Meanwhile, the general secretary of the CTTU Mr.T.Mahasivam has made an appeal to all teacher-trade unions in the North East province to participate in the proposed one-day strike.

The All Ceylon Muslim Teachers' Congress and the All Ceylon Government General Employees Union which represents the non-academic staff have told their members to participate in the one-day strike organised by the CTTU.

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