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Oct 28, 2016

B.N.T.U. and M.O.E. At Impasse After Council of Management Rejects Sending Smaller Delegation

Patrick Faber

Across the country today, teachers formed long lines in various banks and credit unions and collected a full month’s wage, despite an eleven-day strike a few weeks ago.  That’s because government has chosen to pay their total salaries for October, while respective school managements put together a list of names for whose income will be docked at the end of next month.  Those deductions will affect teachers who participated in the industrial action.  As we reported on Wednesday, executives of the Belize National Teachers Union were expected to meet with Minister of Education Patrick Faber today to discuss payments and makeup time.  But tonight, there is once again an impasse between the B.N.T.U. and the Ministry of Education.  That’s because the union is demanding that all twenty-five members of its council of management be present at that meeting, while Deputy Prime Minister Faber is only inviting five members in the interest of expediency.  Earlier today, the council of management met in a lengthy session to discuss a number of issues, including a planned rally for Saturday in Belize City, as well as to reiterate its position that it’s all or nothing when it comes to the pending sit-down with MOE.

 

Luke Palacio

Luke Palacio, National President, B.N.T.U.

“We have agreed that we are prepared to meet with Minister Faber.  In fact, we sent him an email earlier today indicating to him our position that it remains that he is to meet with our twenty-five member council of management.  He has responded indicating that he still has his position that he wants to meet with only five members of the B.N.T.U. council of management.  Our council remains with the position that it has to be with our twenty-five member council of management and we cited to him that we’ve met with him on a number of occasions with all twenty-five members.  In fact, in the media yesterday I cited that, that when he wanted us to support the issue of the special permit he invited all twenty-five of us to that meeting and a number of our teachers whose license would have expired or expired at that time, some were denied the special permits and others have been granted, when he wanted us to discuss amendments to the education rules he invited all twenty-five.  So again, our position is, you want to discuss the matter of docking the salaries of our teachers who stood up for Belize, who continue to give service to this country then it is only right that you meet with all twenty-five of us.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“There is clearly a stalemate between the union representatives and the government.  Is it that you expect the Minister of Education to yield to this new position taken by the union?”

 

Luke Palacio

“I don’t know that it’s a new position, I’ve cited examples where it has happened in the past.  So the question has to be, what is his intention?  We’ve made it absolutely clear to the minister that the B.N.T.U. strike fund is not for us to pay teachers who are on strike.  He continues to insist on that and if that is the point of divergence at this time then so be it, but he cannot dictate to B.N.T.U. what to do with the monies that are raised from the dues of our membership.”

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1 Response for “B.N.T.U. and M.O.E. At Impasse After Council of Management Rejects Sending Smaller Delegation”

  1. carlos says:

    He wants BNTU to cooperate in his plan and then blame the BNTU for his action. Politicians know that this deduction of salaries will affect then politically.

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