Malasia - Refusal to recognise unions (2013)

In March 2013, the Workers Union of the West Territory Electronic Industries picketed outside the Human Resources Ministry to protest against their employers’ refusal to acknowledge the existence of unions in their respective companies. Union president Wan Noorul Azhar Mohd Hanafiah said the companies arbitrarily bust unions by sacking the presidents, threatening union members and forming in-house unions.

The Director General of Trade Unions (Ministry of Human Resources) can refuse to register a trade union without giving any reason for the refusal and can withdraw registration, and is thus given very broad discretion in deciding these matters. Unions that do not register, or whose registration has been denied or withdrawn, are considered illegal organisations. The decisions by the Director General of Trade Unions (Ministry of Human Resources) and the Minister of Human Resources cannot be appealed to any Court.

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