LAHORE: The All Pakistan WAPDA Hydro Electric Workers Union on Monday demanded the government take steps to lower electricity prices.
A press release said WAPDA workers and trade union representatives had attended a meeting at Bakhtiar Labour Hall. Union’s general secretary Khurshid Ahmed, Haji Muhammad Younus, Sajid Kazmi, Rana Abdul Shakoor, Maqsood Ahmed, Rana Muhammad Akram and Niamat Ali Noshair Khan were present.
Through a resolution, the participants demanded that the government take immediate steps to produce cheaper electricity. “Electricity from hydel plants at Mangla, Tarbela and Gazi Brotha is costing Rs2.50 per unit to the WAPDA. Private thermal power houses are selling electricity for Rs25 to Rs30 per unit. The government must develop a better service structure in order to overcome load shedding and provide cheaper electricity,” the resolution said.
The participants said that the government should not privatise electricity distribution companies to please international monetary institutions.
“The All Pakistan WAPDA Hydro Electric Workers Union won the last referendum with a clear majority. The more than 100,000 WAPDA workers are ready for another nationwide referendum,” they said. They said that an election or referendum at other than national level would harm workers’ unity.
Through another resolution, they urged the government to introduce far-reaching economic and social reforms. “The rich are getting richer and the poor poorer. The government should check unemployment and rising prices. It should enforce labour laws through an independent labour inspection machinery as required under International Labour Organisation conventions,” they said.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 20th, 2015.