Steelworkers protest salary shortfall

Some 300 employees of the Kouta Steel Factory in 10th of Ramadan City northeast of Cairo recently staged a sit-in protest, alleging that they had not received salaries for three months.

"Nor have they paid us our bonuses," complained steelworker Emad Fawzi, claiming that factory owner Walid Kouta had fled the country to avoid paying taxes and outstanding debts.

According to factory syndicate representative Ahmed Shaarawi, company management had "collected" a total of LE4 million from employees in order to restart the factory’s faltering operations.

Employee Abdel Azim Khater said that company officials did not provide receipts for "collected" funds, which were subsequently pocketed by Kouta.

Protesters called for the personal intervention of President Hosni Mubarak to resolve their grievances.

Translated from the Arabic Edition.

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