VIDEO: Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions VP: Al-Mahfood Represented GFBTU in Strong & Dynamic Way
2016-03-12 - 11:01 p
Bahrain Mirror: In an interview, the delegate of the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions, Hans Christian, said that the Secretary-General of the General Federation of Bahrain Trade Unions (GFBTU), Sayed Salman Al-Mahfood, has represented the GFBTU in a strong, dynamic and exemplary way, both nationally and internationally. "We are going to miss Sayed Salman, but we have high hopes for cooperation with the next person who is elected a General-Secretary, whether he is a man or woman," he added.
In a videotaped interview, with him and the head of international relations Ellen Katherine, and Consultant for Middle East Region Nadia Shobna, posted by the GFBTU on its official YouTube channel, Christian said: "We would like to stress on the importance of implementing the tripartite agreement of 2014. It is important to strengthen the mutual trust and cooperation based on international labour standards and respect of interest of each party. A final hope is that the workers that were dismissed and still not reinstated, my hope is that they get their works back very soon. My final word is that GFBTU members can always count on the continuous support of LO- Norway."
Regarding his perspective about the congress, he said: "We are very happy to be here, to get a bit of friends in GFBTU. I think it is a very good conference; well organized, good, intense and vibrant discussions just a kind of discussion you expect from a free and democratic independent union like the GFBTU."
Christian further explained that LO Norway have had a very good cooperation with the GFBTU since 2004 "and this good cooperation really encouraged us to also go into formal program that we signed in 2015, a four-year program, on the workers' rights, youth, women and migrant workers. We are really looking forward to the cooperation in this program and we have high hopes for the results of such cooperation and such a program."
Commenting on the resignation the former Secretary-General of GFBTU, he said: "Sayed Salman has represented the GFBTU in a strong and dynamic way, representing the workers of Bahrain in exemplary way, both nationally and internationally."
"So, of course, we are going to miss Sayed Salman, but we have high hopes for cooperation with the next person who is elected a General-Secretary, whether he is a man or woman. We also have high hopes for the election of the general executive committee. We have hopes that the executive committee be a well-represented committee with representatives from both sexes and a good mixture of the representatives here in the congress," he further stated.
"ILO Norway had a very good relation and cooperation with Sayed Salman over many years. Of course, we are going to miss him. We wish him all the best for the future, but I am sure we will have a good cooperation with the next General-Secretary. We also have hopes for good representation between men and women in the new executive committee and we look forward to a good partnership with the new leadership of the union," he said
"I would like to stress the importance of implementing the tripartite agreement of 2014. It is important to strengthen the mutual trust and cooperation based on international labour standards and respect of interest of each party. A final hope is that the workers that were dismissed and still not reinstated, my hope is that they get their works back very soon. My final word is that GFBTU members can always count on the continuous support of LO- Norway," Christian concluded.
For her part, the head of international relations in LO Norway, Ellen Kathrine, said: "For the next period we are hoping to strengthen the cooperation with the GFBTU because now we have a new consultant working in their Arab region and I am sure that this will help to make the cooperation even better and deeper for the years to come."
Meanwhile, Nadia Shobna, Consultant for Middle East Region, commented by saying: "I thank the GFBTU for their efforts in this congress. The organizing is fantastic and resembles power, independency and the unity of this federation. We were glad to see discussions between the members and attendees, which reflects the union's democracy and freedom. We were also glad to see representation for the Bahraini women in the federation and we hope that women be more represented in the coming secretariat and that more youth be a part of the federation."
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