Environment & Climate ChangeNews

Gabon Ecoguards To Strike Over Unpaid Salaries, Health Insurance

National Syndicate of Ecoguards of Gabon may go on strike over unpaid salaries and health insurance accumulated over three months.

Workers of Gabon’s National Parks Agency (ANPN) have given notice they would go on strike beginning Feb. 15 if the three months salaries owed them and their medical insurance situation were not regularised.

The decision was taken in Libreville, the country’s capital Wednesday during a meeting of the National Syndicate of Ecoguards of Gabon popularly known by its French acronym SYNEG.

The notice of the strike was handed over to Christian Tchemembela,  the Executive Secretary of the National Parks Agency, by Sosthene Ndong, Secretary-General of SYNEG.

“All activities in all the national parks in the country would cease from February 15, 2021, at 7.30 a.m. and would last for an unlimited period,”a SYNEG official announced.

“This action is being taken because of the silence of the boss of the ANPN to our various claims,” the official said but declined to be named in the press.

“These past months, we have not stopped calling the attention of our hierarchy to our living and work conditions which are very deplorable. We have not been paid our salaries for the past three months.”

The SYNEG Secretary-General says if their claims are not met before February 15, they would picket at the headquarter of the Network of Protected Areas of Central Africa  (RAPAC) in Libreville for agents in Estuaire Province.

All other agents in various parts of the country would form picket lines at the different provincial directorates, he warned.

“We want the total payment of the three months salaries. We are also protesting against the non-establishment to date of the statutes of Ecoguards and the absence of a viable health insurance policy.”

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Chief Bisong Etahoben

Chief Bisong Etahoben is a Cameroonian investigative journalist and traditional ruler. He writes for international media and has participated in several transnational investigations. Etahoben won the first-ever Cameroon Investigative Journalist Award in 1992. He serves as a member of a number of international investigative journalism professional bodies including the Forum for African Investigative Reporters (FAIR). He is HumAngle's Francophone and Central Africa editor.

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