Serkan Alan / DUVAR
95 employees of the Turkish State Railways (TCDD) have been transferred to other parts of the country in a move that labor unions have blasted as ‘revenge’ against the workers by newly government-appointed TCDD management for the victory of opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) Istanbul Mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu in last year’s local elections.
According to United Trade Union of Transport Employees (BTS) chairman Hasan Bektaş, some officials previously employed by the Istanbul Greater City Municipality (İBB) while it was still under the control of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) were appointed to the TCDD as they did refused to work for the İmamoğlu administration. Bektaş has referred to the transfer of the railroad employees as an ‘exile.’
A number of the employees that were transferred are facing difficult scenarios in their new positions in differerent provinces, Bektaş said.
“One of our colleagues who was exiled to Diyarbakır is undergoing cancer treatment. Another colleague in Diyarbakır has a disabled wife and child, and it is not possible for them to move. One friend in the Çaycuma district of Zonguldak has a wife who is bedridden and he has to look after her. In addition to this, there are people in Istanbul and Izmir who served successfully for forty years and had never been under investigation but have been exiled,” Bektaş said.
“When we look at each case, everyone has a sad story. On the other hand, colleagues who have qualified for retirement are being forced into retirement. Some friends do not want to be exiled are thinking of retiring, which is what [the gov’t] wants anyway,” he added.
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