Intervention by UITBB General Secretary at WFTU’s Presidential Council

Intervention by UITBB General Secretary at WFTU’s Presidential Council

The works of the WFTU Annual Presidential Council Meeting of the year 2023 resumed for the second and last day with the WFTU Finance Control Committee Report and the conclusion of the rich discussion through the interventions of the members of the Presidential Council.

The Presidential Council Members successfully adopted the 2023 Action Plan, FCC report, and Resolutions.

Intervention by UITBB General Secretary at WFTU’s Presidential Council

Dear colleagues,

I would like to begin by conveying the warm, militant greetings of construction workers from all over the world.

Before I begin, allow me to me express my sincere condolences to the thousands of victims of the devastating earthquake in Turkey and Syria, among which unfortunately many of our young Turkish Cypriot compatriots.

Also, through the comrades of PAME, I would like to express my sincere condolences for the tragic train accident in Greece. Unfortunately, this is what happens when everything is privatized and profit is more valued than human lives.

The International Union of Builders UITBB was founded following a relevant decision of the WFTU in July 1949 in Milan. It is made up of trade unions of workers in construction, wood, building materials and allied trades. It unites in its ranks workers’ organizations without discriminating based on origin, sex, religion, politics, ideological views or nationality.

WFTU’s Presidential Council meets at a very difficult time for the working class all over the world. In his speech, the WFTU General Secretary has addressed all the relevant issues in their proper dimension. UITBB fully agrees with these positions as presented. Unfortunately, we live in an age where the threat of nuclear war hangs over humanity, the capital’s attacks on workers’ vested rights have multiplied, there is a general de-unionization effort, inequalities have deepened, while workers are paying for the consecutive crises of the capitalist system, causing them further impoverishment.

The task of further coordinating our actions is therefore extremely important, so that we can deal with this situation. UITBB, within the ranks of WFTU, fights on the basis of class-oriented struggles against capitalist exploitation and every other form of exploitation and injustice, for social progress, human dignity, trade union rights, for the right of peoples to self-determination as well as for peace.

In our daily action, great importance is placed to properly educating workers, on the basis of our class ideology, so as to defend and expand their rights on the one hand, to move towards a society free from the exploitation of humans by humans on the other hand.

What is more, with the changes in the way UITBB operates, which have been decided collectively in our bodies’ meetings, we have improved our day-to-day operation. Communication with our members around the world is now at a very good level, a new website and a Facebook page has been created with thousands of friends and followers, while the publication of the Bulletin continues at regular intervals. Our improved organization, as well as a better management of our financial data, have allowed us to organize seminars more easily, to fully participate in all WFTU actions and also to help organizations and friends around the world in various ways.

For the upcoming period, UITBB’s Action Plan has been drawn up, for which the WFTU has been informed. In a nutshell, for 2023, the plan includes:

  1. a) Participation in all WFTU actions
  2. b) Organising of all regular bodies meetings (Secretariat, Executive Committee)
  3. c) Organising of regional meetings on all continents
  4. d) Organising of special seminars with educational and ideological content, in collaboration with our member organizations in various continents.

Dear colleagues,

For a few years now, UITBB has been running various campaigns, such as boycotting the Qatar World Cup 2022 due to the death of thousands of migrant workers in the country’s stadiums, as well as one against the murders of trade unionists in Peru, in collaboration with our local organizations. These campaigns did not achieve the momentum we would have liked. Consequently, as an appeal for the future, we call for a more active participation and support in such campaigns and actions from all WFTU member-organizations.

An issue that we all need to consider collectively, is how we organize ourselves better, how we coordinate, how we support and help each other, so that our work becomes even more effective with tangible results, so that we are even closer to the workers, effectively promoting their problems in each sector, while also giving the opportunity to WFTU, which has the overall responsibility for this effort, to function even better.

The rise of the monster of fascism on all continents should be a matter that concerns us every day, with the question being whether WFTU could deal more specifically with this great threat to humanity.

In conclusion, I would like to say that we should all support the great effort made by WFTU to improve its daily action among the workers. UITBB is fully committed to supporting in any way possible the achievement of this goal. The future belongs to the workers and, being on the right side of history, we continue the struggles, confronting any difficulties that may arise.

Long live international solidarity!

Long live WFTU!