Freedom Expression of Speak and Right to be heard,Let us Form a Labour Union, create an equality ! in Oxfam GB in Indonesia. sign now

Dear All,

My name is Prima Riantony, Finance Officer of Oxfam GB Indonesia Country
Office in Jakarta. Ive been worked with Oxfam for almost seven years, since
August 2002. I decided to join Oxfam GB at that time, although it
onlyoffered me one year fixed term contract,
compare to my secured two year-contract from the previous job, which was
just going on for three months. I was interested to move to Oxfam since I
heard many good stories of Oxfams work in my country. I heard about its
belief, idealism, and excellence on gender mainstreaming and many other
development issues. I also heard about Mansour Fakih, the former Oxfam GB
Country Representatives, a respected social activist with his inspiring social
books, especially about gender mainstreaming. I knew that Oxfam GB is a
highly reputable organization at that time and wondered how proud I would be
if I could be part of it.

I started my career in Oxfam GB as a Finance Assistant in former Yogyakarta
Country Office. At the beginning of my career, in September 2002, I was
appointed to attend Peoplesoft Training in Manila. I felt such an honour
that Oxfam relied on me, who only have a one year contract to attend a
training abroad. It was also the first time I had a chance to travel abroad.
At that time, I promised that I have to contribute as much as I can for this
organization. Upon returning from the training, I was very enthusiastic to
learn many things in Oxfam, and spent most of my time to work, although its
late at night, or even during weekend or public holiday, to contribute as
much as I could for this respectful organization. I did that happily and
sincerely because I was very proud to be part of Oxfam. Moreover, a week
after tsunami hit Banda Aceh, I was deployed there as the first finance
staff to set up the office, systems and many other things pertaining to that
emergency situation. I was worried before departed to Aceh, because I heard
that tremors are still often. My worries then changed into spirit, when I
came and worked with many colleagues, who were carrying out such a noble
assignment. Again, I was very proud to be a part of Oxfam GB.

Time went by and many things happened in Oxfam GB such as change of
leadership and organization restructure. I observed many changes on ways of
working, programme implementations, and culture change in accordingly too.
Many difficulties happened as the consequences; however, I always saw them
as challenges that made me stronger. My love for this organization has bear
down anything.

However, surprisingly, on 20 October 2008, I was alleged for conducting
fraud because I was suspected to have paid the overtime of the guards,
drivers and other staff whose payments were delayed for long time, without
authorization from budget holder. The fraud allegation was submitted by one
of the managers who already retired from Oxfam GB. This was later proved as
a false allegation as shown in the various evidences and
documentations. Because
that fraud allegation was clearly not proved, I raised grievance as per Oxfam
policy, but my grievance was not processed at all.

Although the fraud allegation was proved to be wrong, I was again alleged
with other allegation, which is misconduct on 12 November 2008. I was
alleged to have paid the overtime of the guards, drivers and other staff,
without authorization from budget holder. I was very upset with the new
allegation, which should have not been released when the first allegation
was not even proved. Meanwhile, my right of recovering from the first
allegation has never been followed up by management. I have asked my line
manager and HR about that many times, but they always answer me with various
reasons which I found difficult to understand. Even when I asked my right to
be informed about the status of my case to the honorable managers, they
tended to delay and throwing the ball each other. My right as a staff
member to receive a fair treat after a false serious allegation was violated
by such kind of responses.

Yesterday, 03 February 09, I received a Final Warning Letter, for the
allegation against me. This letter was beyond my expectation since I am very
sure that I did not make any mistakes, and I already gave reasonable and
complete statements, arguments and facts. I felt that it really hurts my
personal dignity and pride as an Oxfam GB staff member. I have never felt
this kind of situation, in my seven years career as an NGO staff, and six
years as an Oxfam GB staff. As a result of this uncomfortable situation that
I was put on to by the management, I lost a lot of valuable time with my wife
and child, especially with my newborn daughter who is just 2.5 months oldnow,
difficulty to achieve my work objectives and felt stressed of loosing my
right to be heard, in the organization that I love and respect.

I do hope that other employees will not suffer the same situation as mine in
the future. I found it very difficult to get help from any colleagues, at
least to accompany or to consult my situation. I really feel more vulnerable
since there is nobody are willing to be staff representative, who accompany
a staff when facing an internal labour dispute in Oxfam GB. I used to
be accompanied
by a staff representative, who was one of the advisors that always willing
to be a staff representative for labour disputes. Unfortunately, he is no
longer work with Oxfam GB since last month. After he left, I dont know how
to defend my rights, moreover in the situation where there is no labour
union in Oxfam GB Indonesia. I noticed that many former staff have been raised
the issue of labor union importance in Oxfam GB Indonesia due to the
recurring labor disputes between management and staff in the recent years.
Nonetheless, many of the cases have just ended up in staff resignation or
termination, and no follow up on the establishment of the union. There needs
to be a careful investigation, why such an effort seemed to be of no
success. As in the commercial corporate, which usually are the target of
Oxfams critiques, it seems that staff are afraid to negotiate face to face
with management for their rights, because at anytime managers can use their
power to pressure the staff by making the working environment uncomfortable
for them.

Back into the history, the struggle to form staff union was initiated by
Victoria Fanggidae, or Country Advisory Team some years ago. Unfortunately,
Victoria Fanggidae and those of advisory team were not with us anymore. This
kind of problem was repeatedly happen before and there were no repairing
effort due to HR attitude. In example, some years ago, Victoria Fanggidae
called to form labour union but she is not in Oxfam GB anymore due to the
typically same case. Her history case is now could clearly found by browse
over internet (via google).

I just wondered if only labor union exist in Oxfam GB Indonesia, then I can
seek support to face this difficult situation, and not struggling alone. If
only labor union exist in here, I believe that employees will have a better
bargaining position collectively with the employer, which is in line with
Oxfam campaign on labor rights. I believe that through a labor union, the
issue of inequality and fear between employees and management can be

Friends, colleagues, brothers and sisters, let this difficult time only
happen to me. I really hope others will not suffer from this kind of
situation. I believe, there is only one way for us to relieve ourselves, as
Oxfam GB employees, and the labor of a so-called humanitarian and
development organization. Therefore, I would like to have my say very loud
and clear, to express my freedom of speak and right to be heard, A CALL OF
LABOUR UNITY!in Indonesia



Prima Riantony

Finance Officer


Oxfam GB - Country Office

Indonesia Programme

Jl. Taman Margasatwa no.26A

Ragunan, Jakarta Selatan

Tel : +62-21-7811827

Fax : +62-21-7812321

Website :

Please support and make Appeal to
1. Sarah Ireland ,Oxfam GB Regional Director East Asia email : [email protected]

2. Snehal Soneji, Acting Country Director Oxfam GB in Indonesia email :[email protected]
Mob : +62-812-269-291-5

3. Libby Anne Desforges, Deputy Country Director Oxfam GB in Indonesia email:[email protected]
Mob : +62-811-268-630

4. Esther Napitupulu, Country HR Manager Oxfam GB in Indonesia email :[email protected]
Mob : +62-811-176-387

5. Mahani ,Acting Country Finance Manager Oxfam GB in Indonesia email :[email protected]

Mob : +62-811-269-856

Oxfam GB in Indonesia
Address :
Jl Taman Margasatwa no26A
Ragunan ,Jakarta Selatan
Ph : +62-21-7811827
Fax : +62-21-7812321

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Lynette FigueroaBy:
City LifeIn:
Petition target:
Oxfam GB in Indonesia


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