Police urge Freeport management, labor union to establish communication

Thousands of workers of the US gold and copper mining company PT Freeport Indonesia began staging a month-long strike, to last until May 30, 2017, after they failed to reach an agreement with the company`s management.
Timika, Papua (ANTARA News) - The Mimika Police in Papua Province have called on the management of PT Freeport Indonesia to forge communication to tackle problems by negotiating with its workers who are currently on a strike.

"We hope that both sides would build communication and begin constructive dialog to find the best solutions acceptable to the two parties. If the problem is not solved, and the workers cannot work, it will disadvantage several people, including the workers," Victor Dean Mackbon, head of the Mimika Police Resort, stated here, Wednesday.

He urged the labor union to reconsider its month-long strike that began on May 1.

The police have urged those on strike to not intimidate workers opting to work.

The labor union and PT Freeport should initiate negotiations, and all workers should go back to work while awaiting the results, according to Mackbon.

The cooper and gold mining company is operating normally despite the strike, as several workers chose not to join the strike.

"During the May Day celebration, we told the labor union to not compel all workers to join the strike. This is in accordance with the recommendation of the Mimika District Administration," he noted.

Thousands of workers of the US gold and copper mining company PT Freeport Indonesia began staging a month-long strike, to last until May 30, 2017, after they failed to reach an agreement with the companys management.

Chairman of the Chemical, Energy and Mining Workers Unit of PT Freeport Indonesias All Indonesian Workers Union Yafet Panggala stated on Monday that the strike was staged to coincide with the observance of International Workers Day or May Day.

"We waited that the management will demonstrate good will and accept our demand by 12 a.m. Eastern Indonesia Time (WIT) last night. However, nothing materialized, and an agreement was not reached. Thus, our letter of notification to the management and the government to stage a strike is valid," Panggala stated.

The strike by PT Freeport Indonesias workers will be followed by the companys contractors and other affiliated firms that are grouped in 14 work units, according to Panggala.

However, Freeports contractors and affiliated companies will join the strike on May 9, 2017, as stated in their strike notification to the local Manpower, Transmigration and Housing Service in Mimika.(*)

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