BFUJ, DUJ term NOAB statement as baseless, conspiracy against wage board

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DHAKA, Aug 22, 2020 (BSS)–Bangladesh Federal Union of Journalists (BFUJ) and Dhaka Union of Journalists (DUJ) have expressed deep concern over the NOAB statement, which was published in different newspapers today, terming it fabricated, baseless and a conspiracy against the wage board.

“The statement of Newspapers Owners’ Association, Bangladesh (NOAB) has been made as a part of deep conspiracy to fish in the troubled water by creating anarchy in the country’s newspaper industry,” the journalist unions said in a joint statement here today.

BFUJ President Molla Jalal and Secretary General Shaban Mahmood and DUJ President Quddus Afrad and General Secretary Sajjad Alam Khan Tapu strongly protested the statement of NOAB in which it placed some demands to the government and termed all wage-board awards for the journalists-employees as illogical and absurd.

Condemning the statement of NOAB, the journalist leaders said awarding of wage-boards has been functional since long before the formation of NOAB while several members of NOAB led their livelihoods doing jobs under wage-boards and today they become NOAB members.

“NOAB should keep in mind that wage-board award is made as per the law of the state and newspapers have to abide by this law of the state. If they don’t want to abide by it, they should keep in mind its consequences,” said the BFUJ and DUJ leaders.

Actually the tendency of violating the law of the wage-board awards began since the birth of NOAB as they started their efforts to recruit journalists without appointment letters, paying less and lump sum amounts and on contractual basis.

“NOAB never implemented full-fledged wage-board awards but enjoyed all government facilities,” it said, adding that the owners of the newspapers industry have to pay salaries and allowances to journalists and employees as per the current laws of the country and there is no alternative to it.

The journalist leaders said the owners by no means can use journalists as slaves by slashing their salaries, firing them and without paying due salaries on different excuses.

Terming NOAB as a platform dominated by two or three persons, the journalist leaders warned of waging a strong movement against the arbitrary acts of NOAB.
They said NOAB has no relations with maximum newspapers as they only acted for their own interests and did not issue even a statement when any editor or publisher fell in trouble.

The journalist unions urged the government to look into the NOAB statement whether it is a part of conspiracy to create unrest in the media industry and thus harm the country’s overall stability.

“NOAB’s maximum demands are made to realize their own interests by making the government as hostage . . . depriving journalists and employees from their legal and fair payments,” said the BFUJ and DUJ leaders in the statement.