Democracy Index: 98 workers’ protests in December in #Egypt | Egypt Independent

Workers staged 98 protests in December increasing the total number of demonstrations staged during the fourth quarter of 2014 to 302, with an average of 100 protests monthly and three protests daily.

A report issued on Saturday by Democracy Index, affiliated with the Cairo-based organization the International Development Center (IDC), said that workers of factories and companies represented the largest demographic of protesters with 24 protests in December; followed by education-sector workers with 14 protests; the medical sector with 13 protests; and Agriculture Ministry workers, journalists and drivers with five protests each.

Bread distribution workers and those working in universities and dormitories staged four protests each; bakery owners staged three protests; while company owners, bazaar renters, security sector workers, Justice Ministry experts and those working in courts staged two protests each.

Protesting had many forms in December with vigils rating as the most common. After vigils, strikes, demos, sit-ins and hunger strikes were the most common form; workers also filed complaints, memorandums and requests. Teachers also abstained from administering exams as a method to pressure officials to fulfill their demands.

The most prominent demand coming from protests were financial requirements, followed by the demand for permanent contracts for workers.

The report highlighted the financial crisis of the Egyptian Iron and Steel Company, whose losses are estimated at LE1.3 billion with around 12,000 workers having staged sit-ins. Also highlighted was Samanoud hyrax that referred 473 workers to retirement without getting appropriate bonuses, and the privatization of BiscoMisr, despite achieving high profits last year.

The report accused the cabinet, led by Prime Minister Ibrahim Mehleb, of destroying national industries.

Cairo had the highest number of protests staged in December out of the provinces, reaching 31, followed by Alexandria (9); Gharbiya (7); Kafr al-Sheikh (6); Sharqiya (6); Giza (5); Suez (4); Beheira (4); Menoufia, Port Said, Assiut and Minya (3 each); New Valley, Red Sea, Qena and Damietta (2 each); and South Sinai, Daqahliya, Aswan, Sohag and Ismailia came in last place with one protest each.

18 workers of Bibliotheca Alexandrina were referred to trial over protesting in October 2011. 60 teachers in Qena were referred to investigations for refraining to administer exams, as they were protesting not disbursing their financial dues.

via Democracy Index: 98 workers’ protests in December | Egypt Independent.

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About angelajoya

Assistant Professor, Middle East Political Economy, at the University of Oregon. Currently writing on the Egyptian revolution and the Syrian crisis.
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