Thousands of workers hold rally in Jakarta

Similar rallies were also organized simultaneously in other parts of Indonesia such as in Bandung (West Java), Surabaya (East Java), Batam (Riau Islands), Medan (North Sumatra), and Aceh.
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Thousands of workers from the Indonesian Metal Workers Federation (FSPMI) of the greater Jakarta area (Jabodetabek) held a rally here on Wednesday, demanding social security benefits and refusing low wages.

"The rally also marks the organization`s 14th anniversary celebration," said the organization`s President Said Iqbal.

Similar rallies were also organized simultaneously in other parts of Indonesia such as in Bandung (West Java), Surabaya (East Java), Batam (Riau Islands), Medan (North Sumatra), and Aceh.

Said estimated that the rallies were participated in by approximately 35.000 workers from greater Jakarta area.

The workers` union also urged the government to issue a draft government regulation (RPP) and Presidential regulation (Perpres) on health insurance and beneficiary contribution recipients.

"The regulations should have been issued no later than November 1, 2012," he said.

Besides, the suspension of the minimum wage in some provinces has indicated an inconsistency in implementing the Minister of Manpower and Transmigration`s Decree no.231/2003.

"The government is also acting repressive by issuing Presidential Instruction no.2/2013 on the national security threats and the Law Society Organizations which restrict freedom of expression and make a set back in democracy," Said added.

Workers also demanded the implementation of the people`s health insurance starting January 1, 2014 instead of January 1, 2019, then the retirement pension as of July 1, 2015, and the minimum wages in accordance with the basic living costs (KHL) concerning at least 84 items. They also refused the delay in the implementation of the Provincial or City minimum wages (UMP/UMK).

The labour rally caused heavy traffic congestion at the city`s main roads, as thousands of the workers marching to the City Hall and the Presidential Palace.(*)

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