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Jan 24, 2022

Chamber of Commerce Weighs in on Port Strike

The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry is also calling on the parties to resolve their issues through the Essential Services Arbitration Tribunal. B.C.C.I. says it is, “[the] appropriate mechanism via which differences between the stevedores and P.B.L. should be addressed”. In quoting Section fifteen of the Settlement of Dispute in Essential Services Act, B.C.C.I.’s release noted “there is no acceptable reason for strike activity, threats or intimidation while the negotiations continue”. In an interview last week Thursday, President of the Christian Workers Union, Evan “Mose” Hyde did confirm with the press that the sugar separation issue, which is one of the major points of contention, is to go back before the Tribunal following failed negotiations. There is, however, a delay.

 

Evan “Mose” Hyde

Evan “Mose” Hyde, President, C.W.U.

“That stalled in the later part of November, we voted unanimously to have industrial action. Since then, we have gone to the Prime Minister of the country. We have also said to our colleagues at the N.T.U.C.B. So, as you are aware, the Essential Service Tribunal had been stalled, because we had asked the T.U.C. not to make its members participate, because we felt there was an agreement made by the Ministry of Labor to facilitate negotiations. Once the Essential Service Tribunal was unplugged, because the T.U.C. solidarity with us, then the negotiations took place, the Ministry of Labor was involved, but that hit a dead end. At that point, we communicated with T.U.C. that we don’t have any grounds on which to make that request to you anymore, because the Ministry of Labor has complied with the agreement it gave us. So, the T.U.C. has actually chosen someone to be on that Tribunal. The problem with the Tribunal is that our legal support is not available at this point in time. So, that is what we will call pending nuh.”


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