(by Alessandra Testorio) CGIL leader Maurizio Landini puts an end to all diplomacy and launches a frontal attack on the government. After a week in which the union ended up under the spotlight of the press and the controversies linked to the dismissal of the former spokesperson, Massimo Gibelli, and the reorganization of internal communication in Corso Italia, the general secretary decides to respond blow by blow. And in a press conference called after the open Fiom meeting he did not mince words to denounce the “political attack” to which the union is subjected by a government “that is afraid of those who do not think like it”.
“This government is afraid of both the October 7 demonstration and the various mobilizations that are growing across the country. But above all, he is also afraid of everyone who thinks differently,” he says. A real “attack against the CGIL and its secretary to delegitimize the union. A very serious fact, which has never happened before”, Landini again denounces, lining up the real problems of the country to which the government does not respond while “in just two days it hastens to respond to an interpellation from the Brothers of Italy which uses summary reconstructions and journalistic indiscretions that try to delegitimize the union”: precarious employment, inflation, poor work and inadequate wages, cuts to the national health service, cancellation of citizenship income, differentiated autonomy.
And to the Minister of Labour, Marina Calderone, who had assured that the Ministry of Via Veneto will “monitor” the Gibelli affair, Landini responds by reversing the perspective: “we will be the ones to monitor the government, what it does and does not do and to defend the interests of the workers and our 5 million members.” And it will begin, he reiterates, with the mobilization of next October 7th in defense of the Constitution, which will rapidly bring the general strike that Corso Italia has been thinking about for some time in the next budgetary measure in the absence of government responses on taxes, pensions and wages. A mobilization, he further warns, “which will not end until it produces results and until the government agrees to change its policies and start a real discussion and mediation with the workers”.
But the path remains bumpy given the CGIL’s rejection of the last meeting at Palazzo Chigi, today, with Minister Urso on anti-inflation measures. “The fake meetings continue: a possible agreement is announced with producers and large-scale distribution where individuals can choose whether to join or not. We must instead increase wages in a structural way, confirm the cut in the contribution wedge, reduce tax on contractual increases, act on local public transport and address the issue of housing”, he repeats, also announcing the appeal to the TAR, with an attached request for suspension , against the review carried out by the government, on the INPS data, with which it has limited the representation of Corso Italia at the CNEL assembly which will soon find itself discussing the minimum wage. “They took away representation from CGIL, CISL and UIL to give it to unions that have no members, no representation”, he comments, reiterating that on the issue of the minimum wage it is the government “that has to untie the knot”, not the CNEL “which cannot can replace the executive and Parliament”.
And returning to the affair triggered by the dismissal of the former spokesperson, Massimo Gibelli Landini clarifies: “Gibelli did not participate in a redefinition of the CGIL communication strategy but was hired as editor-in-chief in 2012 after he resigned in 2003. Hiring decided by the secretary at the time. In the reorganization carried out in recent months we considered that the role of spokesperson was no longer necessary and therefore that the function could be abolished in compliance with the laws of the journalists’ contract”, he responds to those who underlined the union’s use of the new article 18 long fought by the CGIL. “There has been talk of the Jobs Act but it has nothing to do with it. There is law 108 on associations to which article 18 does not apply. We have read somewhat imaginative reconstructions. We think that the country’s problems are different and that these summary processes don’t work just as the interpellations made for use by the majority party to shift attention from the country’s real problems don’t work. We have nothing to hide,” he concludes.
And the reply from the Minister of Labour, Calderone, was not long in coming: the government’s declarations, he says in a note, “were made in response to an inspection act and therefore in compliance with the prerogatives of Parliament”.