Premier urges employers to respect workers’ rights to form associations

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Addis Ababa, 4 January 2014 (WIC) – Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn has called on employers to recognize and respect the rights of employees to form associations.
The Premier made the call here today at discusses held with representatives of Confederation of Ethiopian Trade Unions (CETU) and the Ethiopian Employers' Federation.
The discussion held at the office of the Prime Minister was graced by the presence of ministers and state ministers as well as higher government officials.
Representatives of CETU on the occasion raised various questions to the Premier and the Ethiopian Employers Federation, including freedom of association.
Responding to the question, the Premier said, “Ethiopian Constitution guarantees the rights of workers to form or join associations. It is an internationally recognized human right.”
In addition to being a right, freedom of association enables workers and employers to join together to protect better their own economic interests, he said.
Associations enable both workers and employers to hold genuine dialogue and to understand each other’s problems and find ways to resolve them, he said.
Employers need to utilize associations as a good opportunity to improve the productivity, quality and competitiveness of their business and reduce cost, the Premier said.
He said employers and employees should work hand in hand to maintain indusial peace and attain government's vision to propel Ethiopia into middle income country.
President of the Ethiopian Employers Federation, Tadele Yimer, on his part said the Federation honors the rights of workers to form associations and will do all it can for its success.
President of the Confederation of Ethiopian Trade Unions, Kassahun Follo, on his part said employers and employees need to work in collaboration towards industrial development.
The Confederation will play its role in the move to realize the Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) of the country, he said.