CEB union goes to court over ‘illegal’ salaries | Daily News

CEB union goes to court over ‘illegal’ salaries

The Ceylon Electricity Board General Workers Union has taken legal action over a decision by the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB) management to pay salaries to engineers based on an ‘E-scale’ which was already deemed null and void by the Court of Appeal in April this year.

“The CEB management despite specific direction from the court to reach an amicable solution to the issue of salary anomalies, have violated the court order by paying engineers salaries of two months based on the ‘E-scale’ which the court declared is illegal,” said Malaka Wickremasinghe, President of the CEB General Workers Union addressing a media conference yesterday. “During the last four years, the CEB has incurred a loss of Rs. 113 billion and we expect it to go up to Rs. 139 billion if the management continues to pay salaries according to the ‘E- scale’.”

Wickremasinghe cautioned that the losses which the CEB continues to incur would undoubtedly be passed on to the consumer in the form of increased tariffs and that the Union has sought legal redress over the matter.

The Court of Appeal in April this year, issued a writ of certiorari quashing the circular issued in November 2014 as “Unified Engineering Service” through which the CEB created a special salary scale known as ‘E-salary scale” for engineers and engineering assistants of the CEB.

Court of Appeal Justice Mahinda Samayawardhena observed that the decision taken by the CEB was ex-facie illegal and ordered to quash the circular dated 27.11.2014.

“Despite the clear ruling by the courts which deemed this salary scale as being illegal, the CEB has paid two months of salaries on the same ‘e-scale’. “We have come to know that the management intends to pay salaries on the same scale this month as well. We have brought this matter before the management but we have not been even called for a discussion.”

Wickremasinghe said that they had no choice but to seek legal redress over what they see as being a violation of a court order. “We are not against the increment of salaries or allowances, but when there is a clear direction from court, it should be respected.”

He added that they have been told the case would be taken up by courts after the 19th of this month. If the CEB fails to rectify the matter even by then, they would be compelled to go for industrial trade action.


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