…Assures monies set aside to pay sugar workers severance
Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, has assured that Government has budgeted monies to help the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) meet financial commitments to thousands of workers laid off as part of a restructuring plan for the industry.
According to a November 29 letter from the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL), GuySuCo was given until December 31 to transfer three estates – Skeldon and Rose Hall in East Berbice, and Enmore in the East Demerara area.
This has led to widespread retrenchment of thousands of workers at the end of the month. Accusations have been levied against Government for allowing GuySuCo to continue with the plans, given the upcoming Christmas season.
“In this budget, while some of my friends speak about their love for the sugar workers; we have taken that into consideration, and of the amounts of money that’s allocated for GuySuCo there is a huge chunk of money in there for severance. So the workers must know that, too, while you keep complaining,” Harmon disclosed during his contribution to the budget 2018 debates.
He stated that the budget inspires confidence and clarifies the vision of the coalition government for the country.
“It is not our fault that the opposition can’t see the vision…This budget, I will posit, has brought smiles to the faces of the bulk of the Guyanese people,” Harmon stated.
The budget debate is taking place at a time when there are deep-seated concerns about the future of the sugar industry and the bitter fallout from Government’s decision to limit subsides resulting in the closures of the estates.
The letters to the workers have split the Coalition Government, with A Partnership For National Unity (APNU) registering its unhappiness about the “surprise” of letters being issued at this time.
Two weeks ago, Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, of APNU, said that the closure of Rose Hall and Enmore would not happen this year but be rolled over to next year. He expressed surprise at the letters to workers. The matter had not reached Cabinet where it could very well be reversed when the matter is raised.
However, on Wednesday, Agriculture Minister, Noel Holder, of the Alliance For Change, the smaller faction, was not surprised and insisted that it was the plan of GuySuCo all along to close the two estates.
Minister, Noel Holder has projected that capital investment of $12 billion will be required for GuySuCo to meet production targets over the next three years.
Holder has stated that since taking office in 2015, Government has supported GuySuCo with an injection of $32 billion, with a further investment of $6.3 billion allocated for 2018 and $2.3 billion in 2019.
“Despite the magnitude of subsidies there has been no positive impact on the financial state of GuySuCo. The economy simply cannot afford this,” Holder stated.
Nov 18, 2018By Sean Devers The Guyana Defence Force (GDF) has won the last 17 National Boxing Tournaments since the inaugural one was held in 1966 at the Police Training School, but on Friday Night the Soldiers...
When the government announced copyright legislation will come next year, the first critic was former president, Bharrat... 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.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]