Mar 19, 2016 News
With the protest and industrial actions being carried out by approximately 735 workers of the Rose Hall Sugar Estate, the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) said yesterday, that the workers are being “severely misled”.
GuySuCo reported that the union, the Guyana Agriculture and General Workers Union (GAWU) reportedly went back on their word after they assured the corporation that there will be no further strikes.
GuySuCo stated that prior to the strike on Tuesday March 9, 2016; the management was in regular contact with GAWU’s Field Secretary and workers’ representatives to develop a clear understanding of the Union’s intentions in order to proceed with better planning.
The Corporation also said that since the beginning of the crop, the GAWU President has been on record as stating that the Union’s General Council has sanctioned a strike every Tuesday within the industry.
“Notwithstanding, in an effort to minimize the deterioration of canes burnt and to reduce possible losses resulting from these strikes, the Corporation has been taking relevant precautionary measures.”
The corporation continued that the programme of strike action being led by the GAWU Central and local officers is continuing to deplete production targets; denying workers the opportunity to achieve the weekly production incentive that they would normally earn.
In recent reports – the workers “stormed” the administrative building demanding that management provide an explanation as to why they were refused work on Monday and Tuesday.
This action seemingly got out of control. The law enforcement officers in the area had to intervene on both occasions.
GuySuCo revealed, yesterday, that the reason for not providing work to the workers was due to the “fact” that on Mondays, the Rose Hall Estate undergoes statutory maintenance.
GuySuCo has since written GAWU saying that it is disappointed with the “conduct” of its Central and Local Officers, who they claim, have breached the normal Industrial Relations Protocol and Practices by escalating the protest action and taking it into the estate’s compound.
“A few workers, behaving in an unruly manner, proceeded to enter the Administrative building accompanied by their Union representatives and carried out actions which were inappropriate and of great cause for concern.
“This breach of the Industrial Relations Protocols and Practices has raised the question of what are the real motives of GAWU, since the higher the productivity of the workforce, the greater the benefits for all stakeholders, including the union.”
The corporation said that despite this “aggressive action”, the estate management has agreed. It met with the Union delegation yesterday, “providing there is full resumption.”
Thus far, the outcome of that meeting has not yet been provided to this publication.
The Corporation said that it is imploring employees to think of their families and the communities, which are depending on the viability of the industry and to allow good sense to prevail by encouraging GAWU to make “smarter” decisions on matters relating to their livelihood.
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