Prime Minister intervenes
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart has reportedly intervened in the prolonged dispute at the National Conservation Commission (NCC).
Veteran trade unionist and general secretary of the Barbados Workers Union (BWU) Sir Roy Trotman said he has learnt that the head of government has called a meeting tomorrow in an attempt to settle the dispute.
In a statement issued today, Sir Roy, who is recovering from an operation carried out two weeks ago to correct a problem in the upper part of his spine, said the dispute has been dragging on for too long, though progress has been made in some areas.
“I believe an agreement is quite possible and I believe that if the parties are faithful to the Protocol Number Six, if they are faithful to the Employment Rights Legislation, and if they are faithful to our customs and practice of industrial relations in Barbados, then they ought not to be any reason why they should not be a resolution when the Prime Minister meets the parties,” he said.
“I am pleased to be able to see that, in some of those areas where we had earlier expressed publicly some concerns, as in parts of the banking industry, that social dialogue has been the order of the day and that the management of the banks and the leadership of the trade unions have been able to come closer together in an effort to reach accommodation in what have been a very difficult period for restructuring and rehabilitation.
“We had a discussion and we still want to see reduced numbers but regarding the importance of redeeming as much of the economy as we can still remains paramount to us. For the matter of the NCC, we continue to insist that process, the manner in which things should be done is of vital importance, not only at the level of the NCC, but at the level of every other government agency, and at the level of every company within the private sector.”
Meantime, Sir Roy has thanked the staff of the Queen Elizabeth Hospital for the “professional manner” in which they assisted in his earlier rehabilitation.
“I am now continuing that exercise. I am doing the necessary therapy to help me to be able to re-establish my motor skills, as it were, and that is coming quite well. I think that everybody should continue their efforts to help me in this. Those who have been praying for me; those who have been expressing their good wishes; those who have just been there willing me on to do greater, I wish to express appreciation for all of this,” he said.