News (1467)

Can public-private partnerships deliver gender equality?

On the eve of International Women's Day, a new report “Can Public-private Partnerships deliver gender equality?” was released by a European Network on Debt and Development (EURODAD). The report says: "PPPs are being actively promoted by donor governments and international financial institutions to fund social services and infrastructure projects around the world. However, support for PPPs runs counter to governments’ commitments to promote gender equality and the fullfilment of women’s rights under Agenda 2030 and elsewhere ". This report aims to contribute to the growing civil society debate about PPPs and describes how they could create additional fiscal constraints that undermine the state’s capacity to deliver gender-transformative public services and infrastructure, or to promote decent work for women.


North Queensland public sector workers have stepped up pressure to rule out privatising Medicare and Centrelink services

North Queensland public sector workers have stepped up pressure on the federal government to rule out privatising Medicare and Centrelink services. “Community and Public Sector Union Queensland assistant regional secretary Amy Smith said the use of labour hire and potential privatisation of the service industry would negatively impact the North. ‘Centrelink services in North Queensland are under pressure because the Government has put profits before people by selling out jobs and millions of dollars to Serco, Stellar, Concentrix, Datacom and other labour hire companies,’ she said. ‘The money that’s being handed to corporations through privatisation should be spent providing quality, permanent jobs in North Queensland.’” The union has launched a “Proud to be Public” campaign.


The question of privatizing state-owned refineries is a central dividing line in the elections 2019

The Financial Times reports that the question of privatizing state-owned refineries was a central dividing line in the 16 February election of the President, Vice President and National Assembly. The incumbent, President Muhammadu Buhari’s “focus is state-led growth and his plan is to form public-private partnerships to revive the refineries.” Atiku Abubakar, his main rival, “plans to sell off the refineries. The 72-year-old made his fortune in the oil and gas business before leading the country’s patchy privatisation drive as vice-president in the 2000s.”


Privatization scheme bribery case ends with guilty plea on least serious charge

A series of criminal trials over a bribery scandal over a P3 privatization scheme ended last week with people admitting that $22.5 million in bribes were paid, but with no one being convicted of actually paying them. For those naïve enough to believe that the justice system does a good job of policing the privatization industry, it was a very bad week.

Source: PSI

LDF joins protest against airport privatization

In Kerala, the Left Democratic Front (LDF) has launched “an indefinite protest against the move to privatize the Trivandrum International Airport” on “the closing day of the submission of bids to select private players for the operations, management and development of the airport. Trivandrum international airport is among the six airports, proposed to be given on lease by the central government on private-public partnership model (PPP) model. The protest conducted at the domestic terminal of the airport was inaugurated by LDF state convener A Vijayaraghavan.”The central government, “having failed repeatedly to partially privatise the Ahmedabad and Jaipur airports, with sweetening of conditions proving inadequate for investment,” has “changed tack and opted for the public private partnership (PPP) model to redevelop the Ahmedabad, Jaipur and four other airports.” Brookfield and Macquarie are among the global investors eyeing Indian airports.

Source: The Times of India

Government move on privatisation in health, education flayed

The Committee against Privatisation of Essential Services, a coalition of organizations in the Punjab, have staged a demonstration in Bathinda against the government move to push privatisation in the health and education sectors. “They said the institutions, which were being handed over to private players to earn profit, were not the property of any individual, but had been built from the taxpayers’ money. The representatives said the government had not only failed in its Constitutional duty, but was also playing into the hands of private players. They demanded to roll back the PPP model and an increase in the health and education budget to meet the growing needs of the ailing people.”

Source: Tribuneindia News Service

COSATU led a national strike against job losses and privatisation

The Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) led a 13 February national strike, saying “when the workers demanded a strike against job losses and privatisation, the Central Executive Committee obliged.” Cosatu president Zingiswa Losi, who led the march in Durban, said “we should agree with the ANC government that you can unbundle Eskom if you want, but there should be no job losses, no electricity cost increases and no privatisation.” [Pretoria News, 14 February 2019]


FG hands over Warri port terminal to concessionaire

The Bureau of Public Enterprises has privatized Terminal B of the Warri Old Port to a private concessionaire, Ocean & Cargo Terminal Services Limited. Mr. Abudu Eroje, Deputy Secretary-General, Maritime Workers Union of Nigeria (MWUN) “commended the concession of the Warri Port. He said that when fully operational, the port would ease the persistent gridlock on roads leading to the Lagos ports.”

Source: Punch Newspapers

"Save The State. Change The Government"

The Public Service Association of New South Wales declares “Save the State. Change the Government.” PSA says “the public sector has suffered under eight years of Coalition Government and its agenda to reduce the services we provide to the NSW community. This cannot continue.” This has included “$60 billion worth of assets sold off to the private sector. The gifting of government run ageing and disability services has left our most vulnerable without a safety net.”

Source: Public Service Association

Veteran Druze leader Walid Jumblatt has spoken out against the government’s privatization drive

Veteran Druze leader Walid Jumblatt has spoken out against the government’s privatization drive. “‘With regard to the party's policy of counteracting this liberal wave that wants to sweep off the vital parts of the state, we will address it with a lot of calm to preserve the public domain and reject such brutal privatization that Lebanon has not seen for a long time,’ Jumblatt went on. He pointed to the power of privatization to overthrow stable regimes. ‘I also hope that the parties that have not yet spoken about privatization would do so, as now is the time because poverty does not distinguish between the Shiites, the Druze, the Sunnis and the Christians,’ emphasized Jumblatt.”

Source: National News Agency

Mid-Day Meal Workers Protest at Jantar Mantar

Workers protest at Jantar Mantar, New Delhi, against the privatisation of the mid-day meal scheme at the government-run primary schools. “The workers accused the Modi government of trying to privatise the mid-day meal scheme by handing it over to the corporate NGOs. ‘There is a close nexus between the corporates and government. Corporates like Nandi Foundation, Vedanta and others have been roped in,’ said Jai Bhagwan, General Secretary of the mid-day meal workers federation.”

Source: NewsClick

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