KVA workers shut down coastal road
Company sacks 62 workers over dispute with EDL
Electricity hourly wage earners staged a demonstration on Tuesday January 14, cutting off the two main Dora Highway lanes. The protest came as a response to a recent decision by KVA, service provider to Electricité du Liban (EDL), to expel 62 hourly wage earners.
KVA, a subsidiary of Khatib & Alami, is one of three service providers (SPs) contracted by EDL to perform a number of tasks such as power grid maintenance, smart meter installations, and network efficiency improvement. The two other SPs are BUS, a subsidiary of BUTEC, and Aleph, a Debbas Group company.
Bilal Bajouk, Secretary of the Service Providers Committee, said: “KVA claims EDL has only transferred $7 million out of the $11 million that it was supposed to receive as dues.” Workers were fired, without the prior knowledge of EDL and the Ministry of Energy and Water.
KVA later on released a statement saying EDL had promised the company to get back some of the workers as per the agreement. "Since this hasn't been accomplished, the surplus in hourly wage workers have become a burden on KVA," the statement said.
Labor Minister Salim Jreissati will hold an emergency meeting with KVA in the committee’s presence to try to reach a solution that satisfies both parties. “Our next step will depend on the results of tomorrow’s meeting,” he said.
Reported by Yassmine Alieh
Date Posted: Jan 14, 2014