The announcement of the planned merger between RHB Bank Berhad and AMMB Holdings Berhad (AmBank) has not only caught the National Union of Bank Employees (NUBE) by surprise, but it has also exposed the disrespect that the management of RHB Bank has shdwn towards its workers.
The unbecoming conduct of RI-IB also reflects the condonation of Bank Negara Malaysia to allow Banks to bully the non executive workers In the banking industry.
NUBE has a collective agreement that covers RHB Bank Berhad and there is a provision within the same agreement that necessitates the bank to enter into negotiations and discussions with the union in such instances. NUBE had only learnt about the planned merger through media reports, Workers in the banking industry have suffered enough hardship through previous mergers and takeovers. The net result had been the loss of jobs, which also has had an effect on the country’s economy.
There is simply no reason to disregard the union, collective agreement and workers. The workers of this country are the main reason for our economic growth and cannot be repaid in this fashion.
Two economists, Yeah Kin Leng and Hoo Kee Ping, were quoted by the portal Free Malaysia Today in suggesting that workers could be retrained to assume sales and online banking jobs. The problem with such positions are that in looks at things in the aggregate and does not relate to the practical realities that we are faced with as a country.
Are we wanting to create a big bank for the industry to operate as an oligopoly?
We have seen as to what this did in the West, with the global financial crisis. In the final analysis, when things go wrong, the common taxpayer will be the ones to bail out such big industries.
Bank Negara should take a proactive stance in organizing a meeting between the banks concerned and NUBE so that this matter can be discussed and a resolution arrived at.
Where the union continues to be disrespected and the workers disregarded, NUBE will be left with no choice but to initiate action for such atrocities against workers to be exposed.
NATIONAL UNION OF BANK EMPLOYEES (NUBE)
National Union of Bank Employees
Kesatuan Kebangsaan Pekerja Pekerja Bank
NIJBE HEAD OFFICE NUBE House, 3rd Floor; Jalan Tun Sambanthan 3, Brickfields. 50470 Kuala Lumput