The trade union leaders claimed that the factory owners are not complying with government directives on wage and bonus payment
A total of 48 apparel factory owners, who are members of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), have not paid workers’ wages for the month of April and bonus on the occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr, as of Saturday.
Meanwhile, the trade union leaders claimed that factory owners are not complying with government directives and the number of factories who did not pay the wage of April is higher.
“As of May 22, 48 out of 1,926 BGMEA member factories couldn’t pay wages for April. This happened because of fund crisis as the businesses are struggling extremely due to Covid-19 pandemic,” Khan Monirul Alam Shuvo, chairman of BGMEA Standing Committee on public relations, told Dhaka Tribune.
However, they are still trying heart and soul to manage the fund to resolve the crisis, said Monirul.
“A total of 1,878, or 97.5% of factories paid salaries for April and 1,449 factories paid a bonus as of Friday. Bonus is usually paid in cash on the last working day, so we are expecting more factories to pay today [Saturday],” he added.
The owners have to pay their workers within Saturday as it is the last working day for apparel workers before the Eid holiday begins.
Although the government offered Tk20,000 crore as loan for the export-oriented industries, these companies failed to avail funds from the package.
As per BGMEA data, Only 1,377 out of 1,926 running factories applied for the government fund but some of them did not receive funds to pay workers’ wages.
However, the trade union leaders claimed that the figure is higher and the factory owners did not pay wages as per the government direction.
“As far as I know, the number of factories yet to pay wages and bonus is higher than the owners’ data,” Nazma Akter, president of Sommilito Garments Sramik Federation, told Dhaka Tribune.
The owners are not paying wages and bonus as per the government directives, said Nazma.
As per the government directives, apparel workers, who failed to join factories last month due to the countrywide shutdown, will get 65% of their wages and 50% bonus at the least.