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21 August 2007

Solidarity Campaign Panama: Worker shot dead and two seriously wounded in the conflict involving Norberto Odebrecht. ACT NOW!

On 14 August 2007, the confrontations between representatives of Sindicato Nacional de Trabajadores de la Construcción Perforaciones de Panamá (SINDICOPP, company union) and members of SUNTRACS in Panama led to the murder of SUNTRACS' activist Osvaldo Lorenzo in Chilibre. Two other workers, Carlos Colindres and José Castillo, were seriously wounded. The company involved is Norberto Odebrecht which is building the highway Panama-Colón.

According to the latest information, Panama's Fourth Superior Prosecutor has charged two workers of the Odebrecht construction company. For some time now, the company union has been preventing workers from becoming members of SUNTRACS.

The BWI has extended its solidarity to the union and has launched an online campaign. In a protest message to the Labour Minister of Panama, BWI General Secretary requests a thorough investigation into the facts put forward by SUNTRACS. For several years now, the BWI and its affiliates have been accusing the company of violating workers' rights in various countries.

Take two minutes to help SUNTRACS in its struggle.

Details about...

Panama (20/08/2007 - 30/09/2007)

Solidarity campaign Panama: Worker shot dead and two other seriously wounded. ACT NOW!

Union: SUNTRACS
TNC involved: Odebrecht
Source: ORL
Case summary: Bro. Osvaldo Lorenzo, a construction worker from the company Norberto Odebrecht, member of SUNTRACS was shot dead. Two other workers were seriously wounded.

For several years the company has been violating workers' rights. We must react! Take two minutes of your time to sign BWI protest message to the Labour Minister of Panama requestin a thorough investigation into the facts produced by SUNTRACS.


BWI Action: Licenciado Reynaldo Rivera Ministro de Trabajo y Desarrollo Laboral Panamá, República de Panamá E.S.D. Señor Ministro; Queremos dejar constancia de nuestra preocupación por los enfrentamientos entre trabajadores que desde el 13 de agosto de 2007 se están suscitando en la obra a cargo de la empresa Norberto Odebrecht en el tramo de Chilibre hacia Colón. Durante los recientes enfrentamientos el trabajador Osvaldo Lorenzo resultó muerto a tiros y otros dos trabajadores, Carlos Colindres y José Castillo resultaron heridos. Esta situación se da como resultado de las constantes denuncias de violaciones a los derechos laborales que ocurren en la empresa Odebrecht que viene recibiendo SUNTRACS por parte de los trabajadores. Le solicitamos una inmediata investigación de los hechos sobre todo lo relativo a las constantes denuncias de los trabajadores. Estaremos dando seguimiento a los acontecimientos que ocurran en esa obra dada la experiencia de la ICM con casos de violaciones a los derechos laborales de la empresa Norberto Odebrecht. CC: SUNTRACS, ORL (Translation) Licenciado Reynaldo Rivera Minister of Labour Panamá, República de Panamá E.S.D. Dear Minister, We are appalled to hear about the confrontations between workers on the construction site Chilibre-Colón. The company involved is Norberto Odebrecht. The clashes took place on 13 August 2007. Osvaldo Lorenzo was shot dead. Two other workers were seriously wounded: Carlos Colindres and José Castillo. For some time now, SUNTRACS has been denouncing violations of workers' rights by Odebrecht. We request a thorough investigation into the facts put forward by SUNTRACS. We will continue to monitor the situation. CC: SUNTRACS, BWI Panama
Followup: A first meeting is scheduled on 8 october 2007. Odebrecht is willing to negociate collective agreements per project, in this particular case the highway Panamá-Colón. SUNTRACS will ask the company to respect the CA negociated with the Chamber of construction and freedom of association so that workers can directly affiliate to the union of their choice. There is a total impunity regarding the death of the 2 workers. The General Secretary of SUNTRACS, Genaro López, says that the campaign must continue with pressure on the government asking for thorough investigations.