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2009 Annual Survey of violations of trade union rights - Mali

Publisher International Trade Union Confederation
Publication Date 11 June 2009
Cite as International Trade Union Confederation, 2009 Annual Survey of violations of trade union rights - Mali, 11 June 2009, available at: [accessed 18 February 2018]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Population: 12,700,000
Capital: Bamako
ILO Core Conventions Ratified: 29 – 87 – 98 – 100 – 105 – 111 – 138 – 182

Trade unions have continued to be discriminated against by employers in the private and public sectors.

Trade union rights in law

Freedom of association: The Constitution guarantees freedom of association. Both the 1992 Labour Code and the 2002 Law on the General Status of the Civil Servants allow workers to form and join unions, including non-nationals and migrant workers. The military and some high-level civil servants are excluded, which, if narrowly applied, is not against the principles of freedom of association. However the exclusion also applies to top managers at the Banque Centrale des Etats de l'Afrique de l'Ouest (BCEAO), which is not compatible with those principles.

"Conformity Act" required: A newly formed union has to deposit its texts with the prosecutor at the Tribunal de Première Instance of the commune, who will then examine their conformity with national legislation.

Right to strike: All workers, including civil servants, have the right to strike, and all types of strikes are allowed. Those required to provide a minimum service during a strike include school principals, who fall outside the ILO definition of essential services.

Collective bargaining: Both the private and the public sector have the right to collective bargaining. A collective agreement under limited duration is valid for a maximum of five years. However, once this term expires, and without contradictory stipulations, the agreement is then considered of unlimited duration.

Trade union rights in practice and violations in 2008

Background: The Confédération syndicale des travailleurs du Mali (CSTM) reports that it is continuing to be discriminated against by the Malian authorities. It is excluded from the civil service board (Conseil Superieur de la Fonction Publique), from the board of administrators of the Agence Nationale pour l'Emploi (ANPE) and the Institut Nationale de Prévoyance Sociale (INPS), and from the Socio-Economic and Cultural Board, in violation of decisions of the Supreme Court of Mali.

Government obstructing collective bargaining at federal level: Although collective bargaining is legally guaranteed, in practice, the government refuses to open negotiations on renewing the federal collective agreement on trade of 1956, and the collective agreements on building and public works, on general mechanics, and on the Catholic education sector of 1969.

The Morila miners are still not being listened to: In October, the workers at four companies based on a gold-bearing site – Morila SA, Somadex, Bloombury Mineral Economics and Analabs – launched a joint strike to claim, amongst other things, a productivity bonus that had already been the subject of a very tough labour dispute in 2005, leading to dismissals and arrests. The Morila gold mine had been meant to close down in 2011, however owing to over-exploitation the mine will close in 2009. According to Boubacar Bengaly of the CSTM, who also leads the coordinating body of the four trade union committees, the employers have avoided any negotiations by refusing to hold talks with the coordinating body, which had been set up precisely because of the breakdown of preliminary talks between the individual trade union committees and the management.

Copyright notice: © ITUC-CSI-IGB 2010

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