EDL Contract Employees Hold Sit-in for 2nd Day in Row

Electricite du Liban's contract employees held a sit-in on Wednesday for the second day in a row near the company’s building in Beirut and the southern city of Tyre.

The employees blocked the highway near the Beirut port and Tyre’s entrance by burning tires to protest the cabinet’s failure to approve their full-time employment draft law.

Voice of Lebanon radio (93.3) reported that the employees caused a bumper-to-bumper traffic near the company headquarters in Beirut and trapped hundreds of commuters in their cars during the morning rush-hour.

The National News Agency reported that the protesters also closed the entrances of the company in Beirut, preventing employees and people from entering and exiting the premises.

On Tuesday, the contract employees held sit-ins in several areas across Lebanon, demanding the cabinet to carry out their demands.

The Committee of EDL Contract Workers and Collectors said in a statement that some employees have been contract workers for over 20 years.

It stressed that Tuesday’s protests were “very serious,” criticizing plans suggested by Energy Minister Jebran Bassil to turn the company into a public-private partnership.

“EDL doesn’t need these (private) companies, it’s capable of handling its own services as EDL has efficient engineers and electricians, who are able to develop the company without any need to sell it or trade with it,” the statement said.

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