Belize - Belize News - - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Economy, People & Places » Essential Services Tribunal Reconvened to Address C.W.U./P.B.L. Dispute
Jun 26, 2023

Essential Services Tribunal Reconvened to Address C.W.U./P.B.L. Dispute

This Friday, June thirtieth would have been the deadline for a notice of strike issued by the Christian Workers Union on behalf of stevedores. The notice was sent to the Minister of Labour as negotiations had broken down between the union and Port of Belize Limited over the interpretation of the Essential Services Arbitration Tribunal Award handed down in January of 2022. C.W.U. is saying that compensation for loss must be paid to stevedores, while P.B.L. says otherwise and that it is the union’s misconceived interpretation of the ruling. Last week, the Ministry of Labour wrote to the union and today, Labour Minister Oscar Requeña says that the tribunal has been reconvened to address any and all concerns of both parties. Minister Requeña believes that the matter should be taken to the higher court for resolution.


Oscar Requeña

Oscar Requeña, Minister of Labour

“We have been behind the scenes working out to see how best we can resolve this problem. I want to say that as a result of this letter that we received on June ninth from the CWU in which they expressed their intention to provide the twenty-one-day notice of intended strike, we have reconvened the tribunal. The tribunal has been reconvened. We have informed both parties – that is both CWU and PBL of this meeting. The first meeting is going to take place on Wednesday, the twenty-eighth. Essentially we have reconvened the tribunal for them to deal with the matter of any questions as to interpretation of the award so yes that is what they are going to be doing. We have made every effort to bring the parties [together]. In fact there was a meeting on May the fifth and then there was another meeting on May the eleventh. I think that it is important to clarify to the general public here that the ESAT made its ruling. It is obvious that one of the parties is not satisfied and they feel that the other party is moving slow or is not responding to the matter of enforcement of the ruling. But that is not a matter for the Ministry of Labour to deal with. That is a matter for the higher court to decide on the matter of enforcement. Now obviously this matter has been referred back to us and we are doing what we need to do and that is to reconvene the tribunal for them to answer any questions that have arisen as a result of the award that was awarded last year.”

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.

Advertise Here

Comments are closed