On the eve of BKDP Congress REP activists plan to meet BKDP leader
On December 14, the regular Congress of the BKDP (Belarusian Congress of Democratic Trade Unions) will take place, where the current leadership will report the results of the three years' work and the election of new leaders of this independent trade union centre will be held. The correspondent of the "Rabochaya Solidarnost" (Workers' Solidarity) has asked Igor Komlik, a member of the Board of the BKDP and Chairman of the Minsk City organization of the REP Trade Union to tell about the preparation for the upcoming BKDP Congress.
"One month before the Congress, a working group in charge of its preparation was set up, which, unfortunately, has never met together during this period. Its first sitting is scheduled only on December 9, almost on the very eve of the Congress. Thus, so far, I haven't been involved in this work. Although, possibly, some issues are being dealt with. But again, so far, nobody has addressed me as a member of the Board of the BKDP and a member of the organizing committee of the Congress," said Igor Komlik.
"Igor, on December 3, the REP Trade Union is holding its Plenary Sitting, where Alexander Yaroshuk, Chairman of the BKDP had been officially invited. What are the issues for discussion?"
"The main issue is to elect delegates from our trade union to the forthcoming Congress of the BKDP. These are 15 unionists plus our two members of the Board of the BKDP."
"As to the invitation of Alexander Yaroshuk, I'd like to clarify that, unfortunately, during the two years that our REP Trade Union is a member of the BKDP, Alexander Yaroshuk has never visited our trade union. He hasn't put forward any suggestions, ideas, and new initiatives on cooperation; however, we're constantly facing his critical remarks and unjustified claims against our organization."
"Therefore, we'd like to personally listen to him at our Plenary Sitting, so that we could discuss all the issues directly. We have repeatedly invited him to meet the governing body of our union, but, unfortunately, he never found time to come. He spends a lot of time on his international activities; however, there's very few information about the meetings of the BKDP leader with organizations inside the country."
"Igor, and what are the relationships of the REP Trade Union with its colleagues-members of the BKDP – the BNP, SPB and SPM?"
"We have totally normal relationships, at least on our part, with all the independent trade unions-members of the BKDP."
"Anyway, I've never heard about any claims from our colleagues. We are always ready to meet our friends in the trade union struggle; and we are always ready to provide our solidarity support."
"By the way, we are holding now a series of joint seminars with the SPM Trade Union, which is, like we are, a member of the International Metalworkers' Federation."
We have organized training courses for workers from among trade union activists, so to say, aiming to eliminate their legal illiteracy, that is, on the basics of legal help to other union members. Our educational sessions are attended by members of the SPM and BNP. Once again I want to stress that our trade union is open to all people of good will; and we are always ready to work together towards defending the interests of working people."
Interview was taken by Svetlana Kravchuk