THE mass picket of over 100 Gate Gourmet workers at Heathrow Airport yesterday were angry at capitalist press revelations that at least two of the victimised BA shop stewards are to be sacked, allegedly at the insistence of BA boss Walsh.
Hermohinder Kabra told News Line: ‘The BA workers came out on strike after they heard what had happened to us inside the canteen.
‘We were locked in. We could not go to the toilet because we were scared that they would take away our ID cards.
‘We were locked in the canteen for four or five hours. Then they said “if you don’t leave the building we will clamp your cars.”
‘Then some of the people came out and others were dragged out by hired security men and women. When the BA workers heard this they were shocked.
‘Coming out in sympathy with us was what any human being would have done for another.
‘If the BA shop stewards are now sacked for helping us, then there should be a general strike, not just the airport but the whole country should come out.’
Fellow picket Kandiah said: ‘If Gate Gourmet and BA are allowed to sack people and get away with it, then it would be the end of the union.
‘The union cannot accept it. They have to do something. They haven’t stood up, up till now, but they have to do something.
‘All they have done so far has been in favour of the company.
‘The deal has collapsed. Nobody wants to sign the compromise agreement. They want to go to the industrial tribunal.
‘The union has to stand up to the gate Gourmet and BA bosses.’
Fellow locked out worker Mani Odedra said: ‘The union must call a national demonstration to support us and the BA workers who are facing the same treatment.’
A BA press officer told News Line yesterday that the hearings into the three suspended shop stewards were ongoing, and that press allegations that TGWU officer Brendan Gold was to be banned from Heathrow airport because of alleged involvement in the unofficial walk out was ‘pure speculation’.
The TGWU told News Line yesterday that it was not commenting on either issue.