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Updated On: Thursday, November 23 2017

Looking For Answers In Rana Plaza

Photo: UN Photo

Content by: South-South News

16 May 2013, New York USA | Connor Schratz - In the wake of a disaster that left more than 1,200 dead and still more buried and missing amid rubble, Bangladesh, and the international community, are left searching for answers.

The collapse of Rana Plaza, a nine story building in the capital city of Dhaka, has raised new questions about the necessity of effective building codes and regulation in low-income countries, and the true costs of cheap manufacturing.

"There is a determination to turn the page, to do something; we can sense it from all parties but our call and the way we insist on the fact that actions have to happen, and happen now," said gilbert Houngbo, the deputy director-general of the International Labor Organization (ILO).

In a press conference at its headquarters in Geneva on Thursday, ILO leadership endorsed a new agreement signed by international fashion brands, retailers and trade unions, which demand immediate action in Bangladesh to protect workers there and ensure their safety.

"I think the one positive out of the terrible tragedy at Rana Plaza, is there appears to be a renewed commitment and a renewed urgency to do different things and to do them to a greater scale," said Dan Rees, the director, of the ILO's Better Work Program.

The ILO's endorsement of the agreement came with a reminder that those responsible for the catastrophe, and not its victims, ought to be the ones held accountable.

"We are against any idea of boycotting the company that will force them to leave the country because that will mean the industry in Dhaka or in Bangladesh, going down and those that are going to pay the price, is going to be the same three, four million women that are already suffering," Mr. Houngbo noted.

The horrors in Dhaka are only just beginning to sink in for the people of Bangladesh, many of whom lost loved ones due to poor management and gross neglect for the work conditions and human rights of their kin. By forcing action, the international community hopes to ensure that the Rana Plaza disaster is the last of its kind.

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