Industrial Action at Gourmet Mokai Ltd

April 11, 2008

Workers at Gourmet Mokai Ltd near Taupo walked off the job in disgust at management’s attitude toward their current Collective Agreement negotiations. The company, which produces tomatoes and capsicums, has repeatedly cancelled meetings with the Northern Amalgamated Workers Union who have been trying to meet with bosses since November. At a report-back meeting on Monday 7 April, unionists issued an ultimatum to management: agree to meet us, or we’re out on strike for 48 hours. Bosses replied that they were not prepared to commit to a date there and then, and the workers promptly pulled the pin!

Management responded by threatening to bus workers over from a site in Woodhill, near Auckland to replace striking workers. Undeterred, the workers held a picket line the following day. Far from wanting to scab on their mates, workers at Woodhill asked if the Mokai crew needed any support. In the end, management decided to play ball, and have set a date for further negotiations.

Foreign ownership - a vital issue for the left?

April 11, 2008

The announcement today by the Labour Government that it will veto the bid by the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board to take a 40% stake in Auckland airport has met with strong approval from some sections of the NZ left such as the Campaign Against Foreign Control of Aotearoa (CAFCA) and the Green Party. But why are these groups so fixated on the issue of foreign ownership, when even under local ownership Auckland Airport is run just like any other profit making capitalist business and has over recent years been the scene of numerous incidences of industrial action by its workers fighting for better wages and conditions?

Below we reprint an article from the October 2007 issue of The Spark which looks at the nationalist crusade against foreign ownership of Auckland airport in greater detail:

Read the rest of this entry »

Venezuela: Orinoco steel industry nationalised

April 11, 2008

By Community Reporters of Merida for

(see original report in Spanish here)

Translated by Tim Bowron for The Spark


MERIDA, Venezuela. Steel workers and the trade union Sutiss have won their fight for the nationalisation of the steel industry firm Ternium-Sidor after months of strikes, confrontations and repression by the National Guard. This morning, at 1.22am, vice-president Ramón Carrizales, the envoy of the National Executive, finally opened a way forward to a solution in the conflict between the trade union alliance and the trans-national corporation’s management. During this conflict the workers had denounced before the Minister of Labour the multiple contractual irregularities and the prevailing conditions of capitalist exploitation, but in spite of all this they were not listened to by the Minister.

Read the rest of this entry »


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 52 other followers