Tuesday, January 02, 2007

We're unionized and we didn't even know it

Pay increase

This is not new news. HM The Sultan ordered a 15% increase in basic pay for all civil servants a couple weeks ago. It was the first official pay increase for Omani civil servants in about 20 years. According to a friend in the HR industry, the average basic salary for Omani government employees is 200 rials only, so most of them will be getting about 30 extra rials a month, more or less. A college graduate who's been working 15 years might get 60 or 70 rials extra a month, depending on grade. That's almost $200, so it's not bad. But long overdue.

I have no issue or comment on the pay increase itself. The photo above is from a newspaper article that has been emailed all over the country about a week ago . According to the article, the president of the the "General Union for Omani Workers," Mr. Abduladhim Al Bahrani, is asking the private sector to follow His Majesty's lead by increasing their workers' pay by at least 10%, if not 15%.

Question, not that I disagree with his point of view, but: When was a union formed to represent me and when was Mr. Al Bahrani elected to speak on my behalf?

Where exactly is this union located, and being an Omani worker, am I automatically a member of it? Maybe I want to be an active member and want to take part in what they do? How do I make sure that their work is aligned with my views, and if it's not maybe I want to be there to represent those who are more like me.

Honestly, is there really a union or is this just an empty title put on Mr. Abduladhim by the ministry of manpower to make it look like Oman is progressive after signing the FTA with the US?

Correction: Mr. Abduladhim's is the Chairman of the General Federation of the Oman Trade Union.


Anonymous said...

So what about the Omani's who work out side of Oman!!!

They should have a increace too,,, so that they can cope with the new prices of every thing which is apparently increacing in Oman...

Per Your Request said...

Red Dragon, I am assuming your joking....I hope your joking!

I dont see why the private sector would increase their wages. We already have high unemployment. An argument can be made that wages are already too high. I would not agree that its the problem in oman, but economically it would make sense.

Anonymous said...

I can't see why Omani citizens(including expats) could not receive salary increase. Face the fact the oil price reached $100/ barrel of oil comparing to a $20 a decade ago. who ever you are refering to prices of food, and commodities keep on increasing. If you are facing same problems as people working with low salary what will happen to our three meals a day. Even if Im receiving 5oo riyals a month, this is nothing considering the value of riyal which is pegged in US dollar. Is there any strategy of the government to help thousands of civil servants working for the development of the country? I am just wondering if it is worth staying in this country any longer.

Anonymous said...

Okay I am not an Omani but my God we are have hunger, needs for clothings and education along other things necessary to live a decent life. I cannot imagine that no one really feels how difficult nowadays to work with almost worthless money as a sort of compensation to our effort in serving Oman not to mentioned that we are look up as lower class of society in this country. We have been to patient as strangers in this land and the more I stay the more I feel more stranger with the current events in dealing with well earned money which is losing its value.

I screaming for help to any who can help us in this mess.

Undercover Dragon said...

Hmmmm - 15% seems good, but then I hear of the Qataris - 200% payrise UAE 75% (on top of a recent 100%) and it doesn't seem that much!

And its just a bandage on the real problem, the under valued rial.

WRT the unions, am I right that this is only a right granted to Omanis? IE Can the poor smurfs working for Galfar for a legal union?

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