Agencies | Drafting
The main entry and exit routes to the A-8 motorway and the Rontegi bridge have been intermittently closed to traffic, and traffic jams have made movement difficult.
The workers of the Bizkaia metal sector have walked the streets of Barakaldo in demand of a dignified agreement, the updating of their salaries and the end of precariousness, in the fourth day of strike This week.
Some 300 workers have proceeded this morning to cut the A-8 accesses from Barakaldo and they have marched in a demonstration through the BEC roundabout to the access of the highway to Getxo, shouting proclamations in favor of labor improvements and against the lehendakari, Iñigo Urkullu.
During the morning they have registered important withholdings in the surroundings of this town. Thus, the main entry and exit routes from Barakaldo to the A-8 motorway and the Rontegi bridge have remained cut off to traffic intermittently, between 07:00 and 10:00.
“Nervousness” of the Basque Government and the employers
The unions have denounced the “nervousness” of the Basque Government and the employers’ association FVEM for trying intentionally “divert” the focus of the mobilizations towards the incidents and have warned that they will continue on the street until they reach “a dignified agreement.”
Thousands of workers have demonstrated in Basauri and from Sestao to Santurtzi in the fourth of the five consecutive days of strike to which the 50,000 workers in this sector in Bizkaia are summoned by the unions ELA, CCOO, LAB and UGT in demand of the sectoral agreement.
In statements to the media before starting the march in Sestao, ELA representative Deiane Arrieta stressed that the “mass monitoring” of the mobilizations shows “the anger of the workers” and “the absurdity of the bosses” and has assured that they will continue “in the street until they have a decent agreement.”
He pointed out that strikes “do not like” the employers, companies or the Basque Government, and stressed that “we do not like the workplace violence that we suffer every day in the workplace” and the indignity of working conditions and has considered that “to fix the point of view in other questions is to divert attention intentionally”.
Demonstration @ArcelorMittalES when he was arriving, the Ertzaintza prevented them from approaching.
You won’t stop us!#langileborroka#StrikeMetal pic.twitter.com/hj9cBPyj5z
— LAB INDUSTRIA (@LAB_INDUSTRIA) October 3, 2019
For her part, the LAB representative Iratxe Azkue stated that the unions see “more and more nervousness from the Basque Government and FVEM” because “interestedly, they are trying to divert the real debate and the real reason why metal workers of Bizkaia we are in the street “.
Azkue, who has encrypted the follow-up of the strike this Thursday at around 85 %, stressed that “the real reason” why workers are mobilizing “is that we want decent conditions in the metal sector of Bizkaia”.
“We want to the ETTs do not champion at ease, we want surrogacy, we want a decent wage rise and equality between men and women in the sector and we want to return home alive. And that is the real debate and not another, no matter how much they try to divert attention, “he said.
Words against Aburto
The representative of ELA in Metal of Bizkaia, Mikel Etxebarria, has affirmed that the mayor of Bilbao, Juan Mari Aburto, is, like the lehendakari, “more happy with the bosses and the economic power” than “with the working class”, in relation to his statements on Wednesday where he said he was not “very clear that all the parties are seeking an agreement” in the conflict.
For the ELA representative, “it is normal for Aburto to say that because, like the Lehendakari, he is happier with one of the parties,” something that, from his point of view, generates “a total imbalance, because they are not showing no interest in workers’ needs of the Metal of Bizkaia, neither in what is requested, nor in the contents, and that is outrageous “.
Etxebarria has also referred to the violent actions of some pickets in some companies and has denied that the unions use violence in their protests.
“We deny the major and, if something has happened, it is absolutely isolated“, he said. In that sense, the ELA union delegate has pointed out that what is really happening is that” the informational pickets reach certain companies and the workers leave delighted and thank the picket that they have attended because, without that coverage , there are workers who cannot exercise their right to strike because, the next day, they will have repercussions “.
Azpiazu rejects violent acts and insults
For his part, the Minister of Economy, Pedro Azpiazu, has rejected the insults against the Lehendakari that metal workers in Bizkaia have chanted during their mobilizations and has condemned “violent acts” during those protests because they do not lead to a solution to the conflict. .
Azpiazu, in an interview on Radio Euskadi, has expressed his wish that the dialogue be resumed and an agreement be reached to put an end to this labor conflict.
The Bizkaia firefighters have extinguished the fires of “between 10 and 12” containers in Portugalete and Santurtzi that occurred during the demonstration that the Bizkaia metal workers carried out between Sestao and Santurtzi.
Three teams from the Urioste fire station have intervened to extinguish the fires.
EHBildu accuses Urkullu of taking sides with the bosses
The deputy of EH Bildu, Oskar Matute, has accused the Lehendakari Íñigo Urkullu and the Basque Government of having “sided with the bosses” and neglecting the metal workers of Bizkaia, who “the only thing they raise is decent working conditions” .
In statements to the media in Sestao, where he has gone to show the “support” of his training to the workers, Matute stressed that the 50,000 metal employees in Bizkaia have seen “their working conditions worsen for eight years. while increasing corporate profits. “
He has denounced that “the same lehendakari who speaks of a Basque oasis it neglects the demands of 50,000 people, of 50,000 families who are only asking for decent working conditions. “
Because it is about taking sides. We and we, the people of EH Bildu, with the working class. Others, with the employer! #MetalBorrokan https://t.co/lUm4V4rmCc
– Oskar Matute (@OskarMatute) October 3, 2019
Early in the morning, the strikers have entered the road N-637, with the purpose of cut off circulation in both senses, but the Ertzaintza has dissolved that concentration that was not authorized.
The closures have caused jams in the Rontegi bridge, on the road to The Advanced (BI-737) from Leioa, towards Barakaldo and have also affected the A-8 in this town towards Bilbao.
The retentions at these points of the Basque road network are habitual, although workers’ protests have impaired circulation and they have caused heavy traffic.
For its part, the General Directorate of Traffic has reported that the exit from the Rontegi Bridge to Barakaldo has been affected on the N-637, direction Cruces, which has caused retentions early in the morning. In the Galdakao direction, the exit to Barakaldo has also remained closed.
#N637 Km 9 #Barakaldoentrances and exits OPEN. #Autopilaketak finished.
N-637 Pk 9 OPEN the entrances and exits to Barakaldo. Withholdings completed. #Traffic pic.twitter.com/I1wtQdRYuh
– Traffic Management (@trafikoaEJGV) October 3, 2019
For this reason, the Barakaldo City Council has issued a recommendation to drivers to avoid using the following streets during said hours: Landeta and Avenida de Euskadi, to access the highway; Buen Pastor (Lutxana) heading towards Rontegi; and access from the Cruces neighborhood to the highway, in the direction of Lutxana and Rontegi.
The Councilor for Citizen Security, Ángel Madrazo, has indicated in a note that, to avoid inconveniences, it is “advisable” for citizens to use alternative traffic routes, or use the metro and Renfe Cercanías “to enter and leave Barakaldo.”
The City Council has indicated that the protesters will carry out on several occasions, during an approximate space of three hours, a march from the Ansio metro station, BEC roundabout, Resurrection María de Azkue, La Florida, Landaburu, Landeta, BEC roundabout and Good Shepherd.
The workers of the Biscayan industrial companies started last Monday a five-day strike, which will conclude tomorrow, after eight years without the negotiation of the new agreement having been channeled.
The protests of the unions have moved this Thursday to Barakaldo, after this Wednesday the access to Bilbao via San Mamés in the early hours of the morning, which caused delays of twelve kilometers.