It’s academic, no case….leave application denied
That’s what happened today, 13 Aug 2012 at the Court 1 Federal Court on the retirement age discrimination case filed by 8 women, ex-workers of Guppy Plastic Industries who were sacked by their employer 11 years ago. Five of them, Periakka age 64, Letchumy age 62, Maree age 65, Danaletchumi age 63 and Yanama age 65 attended the court today.
Watching brief from SUHAKAM, BAR COUNCIL and AWAM were present at the court besides JERIT and Electronic Union members, to give their solidarity support.
They filed the case in April 2012, after they lost at the High Court (2010) and Appeals Court (Mar 2012). Both the Courts squashed the Industrial Court judgement which favored the workers that the company should abolish retirement age discrimination between male and female workers.
11 years ago there was no law in the country but today, as of 27 Jun 2012, the Parliament has passed a new Minimum Retirement Age Act, as such there is no case to proceed, said the 5 team judges led by Yang Arif Raus Sharif. The new law will ensure there is no age discrimination, if the company still has such discriminating practices, the judges are willing to hear the case.
The unfair decision made by the High Court and Appeals Court judges cost lot of pain to the 8 women who been struggling for the past 11 years. In actual sense the 8 brave women did not loose the case since the government has introduced a specific law for private sectors on retirement age.
Yet the disappointment on their face today, when the judges said there is no case and no cost, is reflection of the sufferings they endured all these years without having a proper job, the feeling of being cheated and discriminated by their employer and the system and the fact that the decision today did not bring any changes to their life. Who are responsible to pay the cost of the discrimination the women suffered in the past…Human Resource Ministry, the Courts or the Employer?