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Oct 31, 2008

P.S.U. pres. fires off angry letter to Agric Minister

In August several workers of the Belize Agricultural Health Authority (BAHA) were fired. The Public Service Union responded quickly, claiming that some open-vote workers and others were dismissed because their posts have become redundant. The Union’s position was that these posts could not have been redundant if new employees were waiting to replace those who were let go. Since then, the matter has calmed over the airwaves, but on Thursday, P.S.U. President Jacqueline Willoughby fired off a strongly worded letter to the Board of Director of BAHA and Honourable Rene Montero, Minister of Agriculture, whom she blames for these firings.

In the letter Willoughby states “your attitude is one of a probing and persistent nature with the definite view of termination which you have now illegally done. You must be reminded that these people are technical people that are not easily replaceable. … Nowhere in the BAHA ACT gives you or the board any arbitrary powers to automatically remove employees from employment.” The P.S.U. has also decided to suspend negotiations with the Ministry of Agriculture because it feels that the ministry is not showing good will. The PSU says it is is calling an emergency meeting on Monday to address the situation.

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