May
30
2013

True Story of Secret Deal

May 30, 2013

Hamilton

Author Azhar Bukhari

Member Ontario Taxi Workers Union

 

 

TRUE STORY OF A SECRET DEAL

Dear brothers and sisters you may read a number of stories of secret deals of the heads of the states andbureaucracy, which they made to prolong their rule over the poor people and maximize their personal gains. But today I am not telling you any story of any “secret deal” of bureaucracy or head of a state. Today I am telling you a true story of a “worst kind of betray” of the trust of General membership of OTWU. Yes, it is betray of trust because CONSTITUTION is VIOLATED. Yes, it is BETRAY because OUR RIGHTSunder CONSTITUTION of OTWU were COMPROMISED, without our knowledge and information.To better understand what actually happened and what will be the consequences, if prompt and immediate action will not be taken by you, I will try to make things very simple and straight forward. First of all, I want to draw your attention to Article No. 6(3)(1) of the Constitution of OTWU, as produced in verbatim below;

Article 6 (3) (1)

Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, the Board of Executives shall have power to act on any Union matter that requires prompt and decisive action between regular general membership meetings. The Board however shall not transact any business or incur any expense that may be of vital interest to or affect the good and welfare of the Union as whole without the approval of the members at a general or special membership meeting.

 

 This Article of the Constitution of OTWU clearly put restriction on the powers of the Board of OTWU not to transact any business or incur any expense that may be vital interest to or effect the good and welfare of the Union as a whole unless approval of which is not taken from the members of OTWU at a General or Special membership meeting.

As you all know that our elected representatives executed a “Service Agreement” with USW, without feeling it necessary to follow the Article 6(3)(1) of the “Constitution” of OTWU, without disclosing the contents of the said “Service Agreement” to anyone. To achieve that goal they decisively took the consent of the General Membership of OTWU to enter into a “Service Agreement” with USW at the day of election of the Union, while inserting consent line in the ballot. It is decisive because they did not disclose the contents of the said agreement to the “General membership” of OTWU. Yes it is decisive because that consenwas not informed. They took our consent without disclosing us what we expect from USW and what “PRICE” YOU are going to PAY the Service Provider and till what time. Yes it is decisive because they didn’t disclose what are your RIGHTS under the agreement and what are the OBLIGATIONS of the “Service Providers”?

That was the “First Step” of our “elected representative” towards the goal. Need not to mention that when they entered into that “secret service agreement” with USW, you had already won the “Hamilton Cab’s” case. Blue Line’s case was 100% similar with the case of Hamilton Cab’s case; therefore, in the light of the principle of consistency, as we say in legal language, your victory in Blue Line’s case was obvious. Then what happened in the proceedings of the Blue Line’s case, it is another long and painful story, who did what, at which stage and why, At this stage I don’t want to indulge myself in these stories. At this stage, I just want to say, that was the second stage, which fortunately and due to some good wishers of the OTWU could not be succeeded and luckily we WON the case.

Now OTWU was a “certified trade union” in both the broker companies of the City of Hamilton. “Everyone” could see the big flow of cash in term of “monthly Union dues” from more than 1000 registered poor members of OTWU and multiplying expected share in terms of per month, per year, over five and then over 10 years . Expectations and temptations from all corners were getting higher and higher. Demands “TO DO MORE”and secure their interests were getting more and more strong and frequent. Unfortunately there were only few people within our representatives, who fought with their all strength and devotion to SAVE your remaining RIGHTS under the CONSTITUTION. These were the people who resisted not only against those “dreamers” but also didn’t allow the “elected representatives” of OTWU to further violate the Constitution and betraying the trust of you.

But it was big and easy money, expectations were high, dreams were sweet, temptations were rising, and pressure was high, too. Need to secure the interest before you would become aware of reality was understandable. Nobody wanted to give you real information; nobody wanted you to become aware about the fact that why collective agreement with Hamilton Cab is not being settled? Why no initiative yet been made to settle the First Collective Agreement under Sec. 43 of the Labour Relations Act? Why matter is being lingered on without just cause? What are the real stories behind closed doors? Who amended the draft of collective bargaining proposals? What happened in conciliation proceedings? What was the report of the conciliation officer? When that report was filed in Labour Board? What was the order? Etc.

Who was behind the scene who didn’t want you to attain your goal without securing their interest? If someone has an interest in a hen which gives golden eggs, definitely, he wants to secure his share. So, big minds sat together, in private, meetings held, simple formulas of mathematics applied. Safest way to secure the interest was to amend the “Service Agreement” in such a way which excludes all of your rights and remedies.

But some people were resisting, those are the people who determined not to betray your trust at all costs. They resisted not only with the service providers but with your representatives, too, and didn’t ALLOWanyone to betray your trust and do anything beyond the authority of the Constitution of OTWU. Due to their devotion with the cause of union, your elected representatives had no other option except to REFUSE, not only once, but many times in clear words in writing to amend the service agreement without APPROVAL of General membership of OTWU. But there were also people who didn’t want you to even look into these documents and record of correspondence because they knew that you are not only “ignorant cabbies”

Yes it was a big shock; it was a big upset, not only for Big Brother but many of our elected representatives, too. What would happen with their dreams? What would happen about their future planning? What would happen with their future ventures? Yes it was something very big. Who will pay mortgage of half a million house in posh locality of Hamilton? How I will pay the lease of a new car? What would happen about my plane to purchase a new property? What would happen of my plane to get handsome income, without work?

Then someone brought mighty dollar in field. Some of your representatives were paid a handsome amount of money, in contravention of Sec. No. 11 of the “Service Agreement”. These stake holders, once again, sat together, secret meetings held, at least, Tim Horton’s at central mall and upper Wentworth got some business and they all “invented a term”, a unique term, fairly sufficient to deceive any person, not having sufficient legal knowledge, “Shared understanding about delivery of services U/Art. 2 of the Service Agreement” and they tried to convince that there is no need to bring this matter in KNOWLEDGE of General membership of OTWU because it doesn’t amount to “amend” any agreement rather then it amounts to changing our “shared understanding”. 

How stupid and silly idea was it. Even a first term student of any law school knows that amending an agreement and “Shared understanding about delivery of services under a Service Agreement” is the “same thing”. So some of remaining well-wishers of the OTWU again resisted, they resisted with their full force. They tried to convince your elected representatives not to betray the trust and mandate, given to them by the poor members of OTWU. But temptations were high; they could not afford to lose. Now some other forces, not from your elected representatives but some of among us, also became active and, long story short, one evening of the month of March, 2013, behind the close doors, our elected representative compromised your most important rights, without taking our consent, even without informing us, without any legal and moral authority.

As per clause No. 11 of the original Service Agreement our representatives agreed on our behalf, without our knowledge, that every member of OTWU will pay $ 22.05, every month, to the USW (in addition to the Union Dues). This is not enough; they also bind us to pay the increased amount, increased on annual basis by the amount of Canadian Consumer Price Index (CPI) to the USW. Anyone who knows little bit of statistics can easily understand and note that percentage (%) of such annual increase is not mentioned, what does it mean? How much percent annual increase by the amount of Canadian Consumer Price Index (CPI) and who will determine that “percent increase”, it may be 25%, 55%, 100% or 200%, who knows.

There are, at present, 1000 Taxicab drivers, alone, in the City of Hamilton, it means 1000 times of 22.05 = $ 22050.00, per month (without Union Dues). In one year = 12 times of 22050.00 = $ 264600.00 (without union dues). In Two (2) years 24 times of 264600.00 = $ 6350400.00 (without union dues). In Five (5) years 60 times of 22050.00 = $ 1323000.00 (without union dues). This entire huge amount is without including Union Dues, which shall not be less than the said amount, so you can safely multiply the said figure with 2. Moreover an un-known percent annual increase is added so add whatever percent increase in the figure which you deem it appropriate and see the results.

Does it make sense why contents of the “Service agreement” were not disclosed to the general membership of the OTWU? Does it make sense why, till know, our representatives refused to show the “Service agreement” to you and me? Does it make sense why our representatives don’t want you and me to go through the record?

Now wait a minute, this is not end of the story, the most miserable and sad part of the story is, said huge amount of money is supposed to pay in consideration of the “Union Services” & “Legal Services” provided under Article. 2 of the “Service agreement”, which, at least, provides some rights to you and me. But what happened in March, 2013, our representatives, following the same tradition, without our consent and, even, without our information, surrendered/ compromised the below mentioned rights;

 

With respect to the provision of legal services, provided to the OTWU and in addition to what is contained in the Service Agreement, Lawyers of USW, whether employed or retained by USW for the purpose of providing legal service under this agreement have a solicitor - client relationship with USW and not with OTWU.

 

Meaning thereby know I am supposed pay the said huge amount of money to a person with whom, even, I don’t have any solicitor - client relationship. Any person having little bit knowledge of legal system, knows well that “Rules of Law Society of Upper Canada” is the only piece of legislation which determines your“RIGHTS” being a client and defines the “OBLIGATIONS” of your lawyer towards your case and keep, booth, lawyer and client within an specific “orbit”. If there is no solicitor - client relationship there is no“BOUNDRIES”, no “TRUST” no “LIMITATIONS” and no “ACCOUNTABILITY”.

 

USW lawyer can only be contacted through USW Staff Representative in connection with the delivery of legal services, including for the purpose of receiving advice, providing instructions and discussing legal strategy.

 

It means I am supposed to pay the said huge amount to get the “LEGAL SERVICES”, from a person, first of all, with whom I don’t have solicitor – client relationship and secondly, even, I cannot make contact, when I needed, I cannot receive any legal advice. I cannot get instructions and even I cannot discuss any legal strategy of my own case/ matter.

 

If USW through its Staff Representative has decided to take a course of action in connection with the legal issue (including a decision to proceed or not to proceed with a case, or a decision to settle a case) then the USW lawyers will take that direction.

 

Meaning thereby, if my any legal matter is in court, for example if my petition for wrongful dismissal is pending and Staff Representative of USW decides, for whatever reason, to withdraw that petition lawyer to whom I am paying the above said huge amount of money, will act on that advice and withdraw the said petition. But who will give food to my family? Definitely not the “Service Provider” or our “Representatives”. This is your problem not the problem of your “representatives” or “service provider”. Suppose you are driving taxi for last 15 years and your employer not paid your “vacation pay”, you file a claim of $ 9000.00 and “Staff Representative” decides to advice to settle the claim with 100.00. This is all which you will get. Suppose your employer threatened you to fire due to your “union activities” or whatever reason. You file a ULP (un-fair Labour practice petition) against your employer but “Staff Representative”, for whatever reason, decided not to proceed with your petition. It will be end of matter. You will exist nowhere.

 

USW lawyers will conduct fact finding and review of pleadings in a manner which the Staff Representative and the lawyer(s) in their discretion deem appropriate.

 

I don’t feel it necessary to explain “conduct fact finding and review of pleadings in a manner which the Staff Representative and the lawyer(s) in their discretion deem appropriate”. Who will define and set the boundaries of “in their discretion deem appropriate”. It is a naked sword which can easily cut your own throat, at any time.

Wait a minute, what you guys are thinking, you will sue the person who will take such like decision and destroy your very existence. Read carefully;

 

OTWU shall hold USW harmless with respect of any act of omission of any employee, officer, director or agent of USW in the course of such person providing services to OTWU with the terms of the agreement.

 

Yes, you are right through this clause; our representatives waived and surrendered all our remedies and detained us in a close street, which has no way to exit. It gives 100% free, un-restricted, un-controlled, un-checked and limitless authority to do whatever they want to do with you, without any obligations and limitations. In old times, eve, a slave had some rights but in 2013, in a country like Canada, you don’t have any right. It doesn’t mean under the laws of Canada or Ontario you don’t have any protection and rights, no it is a beautiful free country but these are our “Representatives” who are surrendering each and every right of your existence.

What you are thinking, enough is enough, no, even, this is not enough, our representatives went further ahead. So, read carefully.

 

“OTWU alone retains all responsibility and liability for breaches of the Ontario Labour Relations Act, 1995 and the Ontario Human Rights Code arising at any time out of its actions, or the actions of USW, in respect of any employee in the Bargaining Units”

 

Yes, you are right, in this beautiful country, Government, either Federal or Provincial, made the laws to protect individuals, like you and me and state the “rights” and “liabilities” of individuals. Whoever breaches the law is supposed to face the consequences. Purpose of all these laws is to keep the individuals with an orbit, so no one can take the right of the others. But these are our “Representatives” who also waived our remedies under all these laws, even under “Labour Relations Act” and “Ontario Human Rights Code”. It means you don’t need to worry about the “other laws”, too. Do whatever you want, these are not humans these are just “cabbies” and we are their “Representatives”.

Now, please take a break, once again read the Article 6(3)(1) of the Constitution of OTWU, which says;

Article 6 (3) (1)

Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, the Board of Executives shall have power to act on any Union matter that requires prompt and decisive action between regular general membership meetings. The Board however shall not transact any business or incur any expense that may be of vital interest to or affect the good and welfare of the Union as whole without the approval of the members at a general or special membership meeting.

 

Yes, you are right, our representatives acted in violation of the said Article of the Constitution of OTWU. Only General Membership of OTWU, in General or Special Meeting, could approve waiver of these rights. Whatever did by our so called “Representatives” is totally against the Constitution of OTWU.

I accept the responsibility of each and every word written in this document, sole purpose of which is to give exact, accurate and true information to the General Membership of OTWU and unfold the heavy curtains of“secrecy”. I also claim full responsibility of each and every word written here and claim each and every fact stated in this document is based and supported upon “documentary record” of OTWU. If you want to see the documents, referred in this document, please, establish your identification and e-mail me at;azharbokharipk@yahoo.com. No games, please. It is matter of my, your and existence of all of us.

I had already filed a petition before learned Labour Board for “Financial Audit” of the OTWU for financial year ended on December 2012 and matter is in court, waiting for the reply of “our representatives” Therefore, I cannot comment on that matter, at this moment. I had also written a letter to the President of OTWU asking him to confirm in writing about surrendering the said vital and fundamental rights of the general membership of OTWU, in violation of the Constitution of OTWU but no reply yet been received. Silence of the members of the Board of Executives and President, in this regard, is fully understandable to me, for you I don’t know.

I wish I could stop their hands, I wish I could see into their eyes to find any signs of shame, pain and sorrow. I wish I could beg at that time to our representatives not to destroy the future of the kids and families of innocent members of OTWU. But all this happened behind closed doors and without knowledge. I am neither a politician, ever been involved in politics at any level nor will involve myself in any politics at any level. But I believe in system of law and being a student of law I understand, where is wrong there is remedy. I respect the rights of the other people and very conscious about my own rights. I have determined to challenge theun-constitutional waiver/ compromise of said rights by the “Representatives of OTWU”, in violation of the Constitution of OTWU, in “Superior Court of Justice” and just waiting the reply fromPresident and Board members of OTWU. Through this document I have fulfilled my moral obligations to give you true, accurate and informed information.

 

Sayed Azher Bukhari.

Member OTWU

Comments (35) -

It was director Niazi who prepared the draft in the month of March and sent it for signatures of Ejaz

Call immediate general body meeting and remove all this shit which is going on

Now most of the board directors are scared to call the general body meeting. The only solution is to dissolve the current board and call general election. I dont have any confidence on the current board.

Somebody told me Niazi, even, didn't cast his vote. And after voting hebwent to Anthoney and told him that he did not cast his vote. How he became members of the Board? Who is behind him. What was standard of selection and what else you can expect from this crap.

Jessie I am not agree with you, I can not  believe that Niazi did not cast his vote for the union. He is very smart guy he can not do that.

Mr. Sardar I wish it would happen in that way but unfortunately many times realities are not as they should have been. If it is not true why Mr. Niazi is not rebutting this allegation???

Board directors are not cowards,  they r ready for elections

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