Shaukat’s help sought for 7th Wage Board Award
PESHAWAR: Journalists and newspaper workers on Sunday demanded that new Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz intervene to implement the Seventh Wage Board Award and to decide the Eighth Wage Board Award.
A three-day meeting of the executive councils of the Pakistan Federal Union of Journalists (PFUJ) and the All Pakistan Newspaper Employees Confederation (APNEC) said the Seventh Wage Award was a settled issue as the Supreme Court had ruled in favour of the workers.
Both councils demanded that regional branches of the Implementation Tribunal for Newspaper Employees (ITNE) be set up. The meeting also praised the National Assembly and all four provincial assemblies for backing the implementation of the award.
The meeting demanded that a body be formed to decide the Eighth Wage Board Award, since it was due in June 2005, adding that the next award should be for three years. The meeting also demanded that the government appoint labour inspectors, as enshrined in the Newspaper Employees Act of 1973, to monitor the working conditions of newspaper employees and journalists.
The unions also demanded that newspaper owners issue appointment letters to their employees and regularise the services of all employees working on contract. The meeting expressed concern over the increasing corruption in journalism, saying that government officials were bribing reporters to cover their events. Both bodies urged journalists to be careful while reporting rape and violence against women, adding that the identity of rape victims should not be mentioned in reports. The PFUJ and the APNEC asked their affiliated unions to strictly implement a code of ethics and to take action against corrupt journalists.