Tel Aviv Court Blocks Appointment of New Union Chairman

Knesset member petitions court to bar outgoing chairman of Histadrut labor federation from picking his successor.

The Tel Aviv District Court on Sunday ordered the Histadrut labor federation to cancel a meeting of its representative council, scheduled for Tuesday, to approve chairman Ofer Eini's choice of Avi Nissenkorn, head of the trade union division, as his successor.

The court also ordered the Histadrut to begin discussions on November 20 on an alternate system for choosing a new chairman in the event the serving one steps down in mid-term, as Eini announced he was doing last week.

According to the Histadrut charter, a chairman who resigns before his elected term can recommend a replacement to the representative council for its approval without holding a membership-wide election.

The court's ruling came in response to a petition by MK Eitan Cabel (Labor), who ran against Eini in the last Histadrut election, asking that the charter's succession clause be revamped. "I welcome the court's decision and we have a simple request: That the workers themselves determine who will be the next Histadrut chairman," Cabel said. "It's the workers who rule and must decide who will lead them."

The Histadrut said it would accept the court order without appeal. Eini said he would step down in February.

Olivier Fitoussi
Moti Milrod