Tuesday, May 1, 2012

May Day 2012

Today, 1 May, is the international Labors Day (a.k.a May Day) which is celebrated by labors in most countries of the world.

1 May is a national holiday and celebrated officially in more than 80 countries, and celebrated unofficially in many other countries. Usually, workers and labor unions celebrate by demonstrating and marching in the streets.

According to Wikipedia, 1 May was declared as the international Labor Day by the World Socialist Congress in Paris, France, in 1889, to commemorate the general strike by thousands of workers in Chicago, U.S.A, to demand for eight-hours workday. At that time, an unknown person threw dynamite at the Police, and in response the Police fired at the workers killing a dozen demonstrators and several of their own officers.

In Indonesia, 1 May was first celebrated in the year 1920. But during the government of former President Suharto from March 1966 until 21 May 1998, celebration of May Day was forbidden because it was regarded as a Communist activity.

Since 1999, May Day celebration was allowed Indonesia although unofficially, all of which were carried out quite peacefully in cities like Jakarta, Bandung, Semarang, Surabaya, Medan, Makasar, Manado, etc. to demand the protection of workers rights. None of them can be considered as "endangering public order".

Today, the celebration in Jakarta was carried out at the Gelora Bung Karno Soccer Stadium in Senayan, in front of the Presidential Palace, House of Representatives. Tens of thousands of workers participated in the celebration but it was quite peaceful except that it caused very bad traffic jam in many streets of the city.

Among the issues being protested by the workers were Workers Welfare, Health, Retirement, Outsourcing, subsidy for workers, etc.
Beside that, they also demand that the government provide better protection for our Migrant Workers abroad, including investigate on the shooting of three of our workers in Malaysia.


Wisata Murah said...

we must be grateful celebration of Labor Day at the Bung Karno and other major cities of peace

selamat hari buruh untuk dunia

yadi said...

nice post..........

Meutia Halida Khairani said...

i saw the amazing traffic jam yesterday. may day tough..

H. Nizam said...

@Wisata Murah,
Yes we should be grateful.

Thank you

Although the traffic was horrible but thank God the demonstration was quite peaceful.

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colson said...

Only good and worthy causes. The festive demonstrations seemingly did fit in a long social democratic (socialist) tradition. Hope they will contribute to a fairer society.

H. Nizam said...

The peaceful demonstrations show that the workers and the government are seemingly understand that labor matters should be settled through negotiation.

John said...

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H. Nizam said...

Thank you for your compliment.

Thank you for your visit.