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Dec 7, 2015

Freightliner Sets Sail Without Discharging Cargo

At this time, the Port of Belize is in discussions with the labor commissioner and reps from the CWU over the situation at the port. Earlier today, the shipping company fired off a letter to the Port of Belize saying that it could not afford to keep its vessel in the port. We have now confirmed that the cargo vessel from Hyde Shipping has sailed away since there has been no resolution to the latest upset. While Matura-Shepherd says that it is much ado about nothing, C.E.O. of the Port, Arturo “Tux” Vasquez says that the implications are far reaching.

 

Arturo “Tux” Vasquez

Arturo “Tux” Vasquez, C.E.O./Receivership, Port of Belize

“I can’t sit in a room with you and negotiate while you are holding me hostage. I don’t think that these people understand the implications of such delays. We are in the middle of the Christmas season, there is important cargo on that ship and unfortunately since eleven o’clock this morning until now, I have not been able to contact the president of the union or anybody in the union that can assist me. I have been able to contact the secretary general who has been unable to assist me. We have an email here that we got from Caribbean Shipping who are the agents for the ship and we have shared it with the media and the public. We are saying to Miss Matura that the Port has been informed that the principals of the vessel, Caribe Navigator that if the strike is not resolved by eighteen hundred hours, which is six o’clock—that’s about forty-five minutes from now—Belize local time, the Caribe Navigator will sail with the Belize cargo onboard. Needless to say that the Belize service cannot suffer the delay of a stevedore strike, especially at this time of the year, the Caribe Navigator also services other ports and they cannot permit an unnecessary stevedore delay to negatively impact the integrity of the overall service. The Caribe Navigator must depart Belize to be in Port Everglades for Thursday morning to maintain her schedule. Hyde Shipping regrets that they are being forced to make such a decision, but they have no other choice in the matter. The Port, CSA and Hyde Shipping stress the importance of terminating this strike because it is something that will affect the entire country of Belize.”

 

Audrey Matura-Shepherd

Audrey Matura-Shepherd, President, CWU

“That’s what they said last time as well. I think what has happened here…it is not my duty to come manage the Port. I think the management here knows very well the importance of everything and for years, long before I came into the picture, they’ve played these games with the stevedores. Before they even called the union, they went to speak with the stevedores directly. Good thing the stevedores are smart enough to know that they will no longer be held hostage and be singled out.”

 

We’ll have more on this story in Tuesday’s newscast.

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Freightliner Sets Sail Without Discharging Cargo”

  1. Jaded red voter says:

    Belize needs a new port, new management, new stevedores, new union management and mechanize the hell out of it

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