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Jan 21, 2022

Stevedores Strike at Port; B.D.F. Arrive

This morning, tensions were high outside the Port of Belize Limited compound, as stevedores took industrial action. With them off the job, reports quickly emerged that the Belize Defense Force soldiers were being called in to do their work. So when a truck filled with B.D.F. officers showed up at the Port this morning, the stevedores were outraged.  Police officers standing guard at the entrance of the compound forcefully removed one man from the compound. Outside the gates, other stevedores were on watch, prepared to take action if B.D.F. soldiers began working the ship. News Five spoke to Evan “Mose” Hyde, President of the Christian Workers Union.


Evan “Mose” Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union

“It is an industrial action at this point in time.”


Evan “Mose” Hyde

Paul Lopez

“Is this as a result of that decision that was taken back in November? Is this something that is extending from July?”


Evan “Mose” Hyde, President, Christian Workers Union

“Right not this is everything, everything, and this has to do with the fact that we have unresolved negotiation with the Sugar, and then the trigger of course yesterday, with the Port’s refusal to allow the recommendation of our general foremen. Stevedores have essentially, several members stayed out here all night, because there has been a rumor of an intention to offload the ships without using stevedore labor, and that would be breaking the back of our stevedore action. Early this morning we got reports that B.D.F. would be used, and subsequently, a truck with B.D.F. in the back went to the pier head, so presently there is B.D.F. on the pier head, which essentially is, if that is what happened, it is the government of Belize putting an intervention on behalf of the employer and a private entity to break the industrial actions of a legitimately formed union and a legitimate, legal industrial action on the part of the members.”


Guy Neal

Guy Neal, Stevedore

“They are not as yet, doing our job. We nuh wah allow that fih happen. We spoke to Mr. Williams this morning and we spoke to one of Kareem’s advisor to security. Whenever we see any container move, we gwen een deh. That dah nuh if, but, or maybe. That dah my job. I have other little businesses, but this is the big part of my income. And, the thing of it is, we have to make way for the young Stevedores. By right, the state nuh fih come een and do the stevedores work. That is not the agreement. We wah do the work. I have been doing my job for forty years you know, I nuh just come yah. I am the fourth generation stevedore and I wah stand up for my rights. I am not a violent person, but if it is the way it has to go, it is the way it has to go.”

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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