May 25, 2013
Moyano ups confrontation with gov’t
After anti-government CGT umbrella labour union boss Hugo Moyano led a protest in front of the national government’s Labour Ministry offices in support of the Maxiconsumo wholesale supermarket pickets, the teamsters union finally agreed to suspend it’s protest measures for 10 days in exchange for a formal investigation of all Maxiconsumo shops by the Buenos Aires City labour under-secretary.
Teamsters leader Pablo Moyano (son of the CGT boss) said that the agreement does not mean that the union will not stage pickets at other wholesale supermarkets.
“The city’s labour under-secretary asked us for 10 days so they can inspect all the shops; if the company doesn’t comply it will be fined. At the moment there are protests all over the country,” said Pablo Moyano.
Security Minister Sergio Berni declared that an investigation was being conducted by a federal judge to identify and interrogate every teamster who had participated in the illegal blockade. He said that they had already identified ten people who were part of the blockade. “For now the case is a law violation but it may include an unlawful deprivation of liberty charge,” Berni said.
Moyano had organized a teamster union protest in front of the Labour Ministry in order to pressure the government to force logistics workers at Maxiconsumo wholesalers to change affiliations from the commerce labour union to his teamsters union.
Teamsters union Under-Secretary Pablo Moyano began the protest a week ago, by blockading the entrances of almost all the Maxiconsumo wholesale supermarkets throughout the country, leading to 30 out of 32 stores being closed nationwide.
During the protest in front of the ministry, his father Hugo Moyano strongly denounced President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and Labour Minister Carlos Tomada, accusing the president of “backstabbing” the workers and Tomada of being the “worst labour minister in history.”
In aggressive statements, Moyano pronounced “the government is annoyed with me, they hate me, but they also fear me a little.” He went on to remark that the government wanted to put him in jail, but he “didn’t care”. Moyano also slammed the government for “cosying up to businessmen” because they wanted to moderate their wage hike demands.
He also fired criticism at the Commerce labour union, saying they had always wanted to take away “their logistics workers,” which he rejected on the grounds that logistics workers were “transport workers”, and said internationally they are considered so too.
The CGT labour union boss threatened to prosecute Tomada for not fulfilling his duties as a public official. After a meeting was held at 4pm between Maxiconsumo and the teamster at the City’s labour secretary, Moyano finally relented and agreed to suspend the wholesale supermarket blockade for ten days, giving the company and the national government some respite in face price controls they were putting in jeopardy by the protest.
Pro-government CGT affiliated Power Workers union leader Oscar Lescano denounced Moyano’s blockade stating that he should “respect the justice system” and remarked that the only CGT is the one led by Metalworker union boss Antonio Caló. He minimized the importance of Moyano and his presidential aspirations stating that “he’s no Lula,” (in reference to the popular Brazilian former president who had been a labour union leader).
Herald with DyN, Ambito.com