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Jakarta Post

Teachers file lawsuit against school for failure to pay severance pay

  • Arya Dipa

    The Jakarta Post

Bandung, West Java   /   Mon, February 12, 2018   /   06:25 pm
Teachers file lawsuit against school for failure to pay severance pay Hundreds of school teachers, from the Indonesian Private Teachers Association (PGSRI) staged protest against the elimination of their monthly incentives at Tangerang City Hall, Banten on Monday (Sept. 11, 2017). (Warta Kota/Andika Panduwinata)

Some 116 teachers have filed a lawsuit against the Ma’had Al-Zaytun Indonesian Islamic Boarding School Foundation for the latter’s alleged failure to pay salaries and severance pay to the teachers amounting to Rp 13 billion (US$952,900).

Dozens of former teachers, attended the first hearing at the Bandung Commercial Court in West Java on Monday. They filed their lawsuit at the court as part of efforts to demand the school pay their salaries from December 2016 to January 2018.

The first hearing, however, was adjourned by presiding Judge Waspin Simbolon because of the absence of the school’s representatives. The hearing will resume on Feb. 26 when the judge will read out the lawsuit.

The case started when the school, founded by leader Panji Gumilang, allegedly dismissed the 116 teachers without notice on Jan 1, 2017. The teachers were also barred from entering the school to ask for clarification. Moreover, no severance pay or salaries had reportedly been paid since the dismissals.

Mustaqim, 51, one of the former teachers urged Al Zaytun to fulfill its obligations to the employees by upholding their rights.

“We are teachers, promoted through official letters and we are also certified teachers. But now, our fate is unclear,” he said.

The teachers had reached out to the foundation by inviting a third party, the West Java Empowerment Agency, to mediate. However, no settlement emerged after three meetings, which prompted the teachers to file the lawsuit, Mustaqim said.

The teachers had also reported the case to the Indonesian Ombudsman’s Office last year. (rin)