At the commencement of the session which was chaired by the Hon. Catherine Hughes – Minister of Public Telecommunications there were about four male characters sitting in the front row grumbling among themselves. Several times the minister had to appeal for order because of the behaviour of these four. The Madam Chairlady indicated that the format the activity would have taken is as follows – an address by the Hon. Noel Holder, Minister of Agriculture followed by remarks from Hon. Khemraj Ramjattan, Minister of Public Security after which sugar workers would ask questions, seek clarity and amicable decisions would be made.
The four gentlemen continued to be disruptive but not at a level that warranted police intervention. The Hon. Noel Holder addressed the gathering. At the conclusion of Minister Holder’s address the four men began to inquire about their severance pay. Minister Cathy Hughes neatly called for order and asked that Minister Ramjattan speak after which questions from the workers would be facilitated.
The four men were not willing to settle for that and began to be loud and disorderly seeking answers about their severance pay. Minister Ramjattan explained the legal ramifications that are currently present within the situation given that GAWU took GUYSUCO to court over the said matter. As hard as the minister tried to explain; louder and more disorderly were the four men asking questions relating to the said issue (severance pay).
At no point did any minister refuse to answer any question and further all queries raised by the four men were addressed by the Ministers in a calm, cool and collective manner. After about an hour of continuous back and forth over severance pay (which is currently engaging the courts of Guyana and the minister did say the court’s decision will be honoured) another sugar worker took the microphone and requested that we move on because of the importance of time and given the fact that divestment and diversification are yet to be discussed.
She further stated that there are more that four people present and order needs to prevail if we are to get anywhere. She went on to recommend that should order and peace not prevail then the police should be brought in to do their job. At this juncture the four men got up and hastily left the meeting. Roughly about 15 persons followed them whilst the majority remained, order was restored and the meeting continued peacefully. It must be mentioned that from among the four who were disrupting the meeting, two came back in and sat peacefully throughout the meeting and at the end of it all were seen embracing Hon. Minister Harmon.
During the closing remarks, sugar workers acknowledged by their applause that the session was indeed fruitful and informative. Editor, it is my belief that the four gentlemen attended the session with a clear motive. I am extremely happy that majority who attended did not fall prey to their actions.
Jul 23, 2017(Reuters) – England start as favourites to lift their fourth Women’s World Cup title at Lord’s today, but face an Indian side high on confidence after knocking out defending champions...
If you check the commentators, columnists and letter-writers for all the newspapers since the burning down of the Camp Street... more
By Sir Ronald Sanders This commentary continues the discussion on the relevance and state of US-Caribbean relations against... more
Editor’s Note, If your sent letter was not published and you felt its contents were valid and devoid of libel or personal attacks, please contact us by phone or email.