'The unions unanimously disagree with the statement made by the newspapers' owners'
Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) have said the statement made by the Newspaper Owners’ Association of Bangladesh (Noab) on June 12 is "morally unacceptable" and "unrealistic".
The journalist community was shocked and expressed concern over the Noab statement, said a statement, signed by BFUJ President Mollah Jalal, Secretary General Shaban Mahmud, DUJ President Abu Zafar Surja and General Secretary Sohel Haider Chowdhury, issued yesterday.
"The unions unanimously disagree with the statement made by the newspapers' owners," reads it.
The leaders in the statement said the journalists and employees of all the newspapers always consider the organizations they work for as their own.
Raising question on the livelihood and the dignity of the media workers will create a new crisis for the newspaper industry, feared the journalists leaders.
It will also create distance and strain relationships between the owners and the media people which will affect the entire industry, they opined.
BFUJ and DUJ leaders in their statement said that on 9 September 2013, the government announced the gazette notification of the 8th wage board, but the newspaper owners are creating many obstacles to make it effective.
Similarly, in 2018, 45% dearness allowance was awarded for the newspaper employees, but the owners have been depriving the workers by ignoring the order for almost a year, which is illegal, the journalist leaders alleged.
The leaders also said the journalists have no objection if the newspaper owners get more support from the government for the betterment of the industry as well as the welfare of the workers and employees.
However, if the journalists-workers-employees are terminated or denied fair benefits by formulating the new wage board, then it will not be accepted, they warned.
If necessary, workers, journalists and employees of the media industry will unite and wage a movement, they further said.