ETA Doha accused of non-payment of staff dues.
Qatar's ETA Engineering & Contracting has been accused of failing to pay final settlement dues to employees laid off during the past year.
Sources close to the company allege that the contractor, a Doha-based subsidiary of ETA Ascon Group, failed to pay end-of-service dues to more than 100 staff members following the termination of their contracts.
The sources told Construction Week that the former employees have also been denied exit passages.
One source, who wished to remain anonymous, said: "More than 100 staff have been terminated in the past year, without anyone receiving their end-of-service dues."
It appears that at least one employee has secured diplomatic intervention from the Indian Embassy in Qatar in a bid to secure payment from ETA.
Construction Week has obtained a copy of the minutes of a meeting attended by the affected employee, a representative from ETA, and Dr Mohammed Aleem, Third Secretary (Labour and Community Welfare) in the Indian Embassy Doha.
During the course of the meeting, ETA cited the "financial crunch" as a reason for non-payment of the former worker's salary for the month of February.
When asked when the outstanding final settlement would be released, the ETA representative stated: "No committed date can be provided currently, since the settlements are due for staff who had left eight months earlier - hence, this issue will be considered only after settling their earlier outstanding [payments]."
The meeting minutes state that Dr Aleem expressed his dissatisfaction with ETA's approach. The document added: "[That] ETA is unable to settle the dues of the staff [member] who has rendered six years of service to the company, and still hasn't been issued the NOC [non-objection certificate], is a matter of concern."
The ETA representative said that the matter would be raised with the firm's senior management before issuing a response to Dr Aleem.
Construction Week offered ETA the right to reply, but is yet to receive an official response.
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