Telemasr factory employees continue to protest forced early retirement

Yasmine Saleh
3 Min Read

CAIRO: Around 50 of Telemasr factory’s 500 employees continued their five-day “peaceful protest against the management’s decision to force them to go on early retirement.

The former public sector electronics factory is known for its NEC TVs, cookers and most recently laptops. It has two branches, one in Haram and another in Ismailia.

“This factory used to be the best and most advanced manufacturer of electronics, said engineer Sally Abdel Mawgoud, general manager of the quality control department at Telemasr.

Abdel Mawgoud, who has been working at the factory for 30 years, relayed how the downward spiral began when the factory was privatized in 1996 and sold to its Palestinian current owner Hani Al-Ghazawy.

Five employees join Abdel Mawgoud in alleging that Al-Ghazawy illegally became a member of the factory’s board of directors in the 1990s. He was introduced through his father, who ran an electronics store that sold limited Telemasr products.

“When the government decided to privatize the factory, Al-Ghazawy bought it from another Egyptian businessman who had bought the factory from the government and then resold it to Al-Ghazawy, she said.

She recalls the days when there used to be thousands of employees.

“Now there are only 500 left. He forced every one to leave because he wants to tear it down and sell the land, which does not belong to him in the first place. He wants to sell it to another businessman who wants to build a mall in its place.

“This man doesn’t want to produce anything. He’s a merchant, he wants to buy and sell but doesn’t care about the factory or the employees who spent their lifetime building this place, she added.

Journalists are not allowed to enter the factory without official permits from the administration, but this reporter managed to get in through sources inside.

Engineer Mostafa, the general manager of the Haram factory has documented all his demands in a word document on his computer which he plans to attach to a complaint he will file at the Attorney General’s office.

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