Legal Victory For Metalworkers in Bekasi

From the International Metalworkers’ Federation (IMF) on a legal victory that gained compensation for 300 Federasi Serikat Pekerja Metal Indonesia (FSPMI) workers who have been locked out since October 2008:

IMF affiliate FSPMI won a major court battle on May 14, which is unprecedented in an industrial dispute, involving PT Kymco Lippo Motor Indonesia, located in Bekasi, Indonesia. The Special Regional Court ruled in favour of the workers by declaring the company bankrupt (insolvent) and ordered that the movable and immovable assets including land and building be auctioned of and the workers paid their due compensation from the proceeds of the sales of these assets.

…In October 2008 the company ceased operation and since then more than 300 workers have been locked out and abruptly dismissed from employment. The company’s problem arose due to internal shareholder conflicts that affected the company’s business operation and forced its closure.

The FSPMI, whilst keeping the struggle going on since 2008, also embarked on a series of legal battles. The 300 workers who are members of the FSPMI took turns to keep daily vigils inside the company premises, in order to prevent any possible attempts by the local shareholder or other creditors from removing the movable assets of the company.

Said Iqbal, President of FSPMI, lamented that he has mixed feelings about the victory in the courts. He said that while the FSPMI succeeded in declaring the company insolvent and obtained an order to dispose of the assets of the company, the local share holder might mount an appeal to the higher courts. The FSPMI will fight them at every level, he assured.

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