The working conditions in Linda Manufacturing Company can best be described as slave labour. Workers in the factories of this Korean-owned firm have up in arms against the inhuman conditions they routinely face for several years. This led to a peaceful protest on January 25, against the dismissal of 10 union leaders for demanding improved working conditions.
More than 50 policemen were drafted in to repress the mass action. They fired teargas canisters indiscriminately at the demonstrators. One of these hit Aina Adebobola, a 25-year old female worker on the face, resulting in grievous bodily harm. But, this dastardly act could not supress the mass anger of Linda workers. On the contrary, it spurred intensified action.
They downed their tools, embarking on an indefinite strike action, which lasted two weeks. They returned to work only when an agreement was signed by management with the National Union of Chemical, Footwear, Leather and Non-Metallic Products Employees (NUCFRLANMPE), on February 14.
Linda Company which manufactures the popular X-pression weave-on has a been in the news for the wrong reasons for several years now. It has institutionalised one of the worst forms of the bosses’ on-the-job “disciplining” of the working class, by instituting a “27 point” regime. What this means is that, workers are scored points of demerits for not meeting up with piece-rate targets set by management or for mistakes on the job. Once the demerits score reaches 27, the worker is automatically sacked.