Press Workers’ Union celebrates 47th anniversary
SIX media companies have so far signed collective agreements with the Press Workers’ Union (Basın-Sen), union head Ali Kişmir announced during a reception held to mark its 47th anniversary — and at which he reiterated “firm and strong” opposition to any violation of press freedom.
Mr Kişmir voiced pride that the number of unionised institutions in the sector had increased by five since he and his team took over the union 18 months ago, with the aim of bringing about benefits for its members.
Representatives of unions from both sides of the island attended the event in Lefkoşa on Monday, among them Greek Cypriot Journalists’ Union head Yiorgos Frangos, who expressed a wish for continued collaboration between two industry bodies.
Lefkoşa Mayor Mehmet Harmancı also spoke up for a free press in the TRNC, noting the need for less control over state broadcaster BRT and its Tak news agency.
Interior Minister Ayşegül Baybars confirmed her view that “the press plays a crucial role in a country’s process of democratisation”.
Labour and Social Security Minister Zeki Çeler, attending alongside Ms Baybars, National Education and Culture Minister Cemal Özyiğit and Agriculture and Natural Resources Minister Erkut Şahali, also backed unionisation in the media and said they had chosen Basın-Sen as their pilot union, with “additional salary support for TRNC workers” available to participating firms.
Basın-Sen members enjoy the evening