Ver Angola

Defense

Court officials announce national strike starting Monday

The Union of Justice Officials of Angola (SOJA) announced this Friday a national strike, starting Monday, in protest against the "precarious conditions in the courts, lack of transportation, health insurance and for the revision of the remuneration statute.

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According to the secretary general of SOJA, Joaquim de Brito Teixeira, the first phase of the strike will take place from the 6th to the 10th of this month, and if there is no availability for negotiation on the part of the Superior Council of the Judiciary (CSMJ), the second phase will be set in motion between the 20th and 24th of this month.

The strike is expected to cover all first instance courts in Angola's 19 judicial provinces.

Speaking to Lusa, Joaquim de Brito Teixeira pointed to the "lack of personnel, the revision of the remuneration statute for justice officials, the precarious conditions that the courts are presenting to us today" as some of the points included in the list of demands.

"We lack the minimum, including even paper, we lack conditions or means of travel when you need to go and notify someone", the union leader pointed out.

The SOJA's list of demands was submitted to the CSMJ last April 15 and it also states the need for the "urgent implementation" of a health insurance policy to guarantee medical assistance and medication to the court clerks.

For Joaquim de Brito Teixeira, the implementation of a health insurance for the justice officers will require the establishment of agreements between the CSMJ and the insurance companies.

The union leader also lamented the lack of a movement or actions by the CSMJ so that justice officials, "who every day work in the courts in summary judgment sessions," would be vaccinated against covid-19.

"Every day the courts do summary trials, the court clerks assigned to the courts have no rest, but they are not considered front-line agents, their children have no medical care or medicine," he noted.

When asked if the announcement of the work stoppage should encourage the CSMJ to respond favorably to his demands, the union leader was "skeptical", recalling that the meetings of June 6 and August 9 with the body "had no effect".

"So I don't see this paralyzation as an incentive for the CSMJ to have to make a statement," the SOJA secretary-general concluded.