By Stelios Orphanides
Bank workers’ union Etyk said that it may resort to strike action to protest the dismissal of an unspecified number of Cyprus Cooperative Bank employees not servicing their non-performing loans.
“Our organisation was surprised to discover that the administration of the Co-op fired workers over problems with their accounts,” related to non-performing loans, the bank said in a statement on its website on Wednesday. “This fact is of particular importance as the Co-op belongs to the state and it is effectively managed by the government. Therefore, whatever happens at the Co-op, especially anti-labour actions, it carries the government’s seal (of approval)”.
The union said that the bank, which in 2014 and 2015 received a capital injection of €1.5bn in taxpayer’s money, failed to carry out a disciplinary procedure to determine whether the fired workers had committed any offences.
“Nobody is fired for owing money, but you try instead (to find out) why he received excessive loans which he cannot repay,” Etyk added. “Nobody should remain complacent even if not included among those fired, since should the bank’s administration be allowed to act in this arbitrary and unlawful way, more such actions will follow”.
The union added that it will take “all necessary action, without ruling out strike”.