The Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) says it was “dismayed and surprised to learn” yesterday that the Guyana Sugar Corporation Inc (GuySuCo) has absolutely no monies to pay the some 4,000 sugar workers whose jobs have been deemed redundant at Skeldon, Rose Hall and East Demerara Estates.
Those workers last working day will be on December 29, 2017 and the affected workers expected to receive their payments at that time to sustain themselves and their families during the difficult.
GAWU said the Corporation’s admission is in complete contrast to what Government officials have been saying over the past days.
“We drew to the GuySuCo’s attention for instance that Minister of State, Joseph Harmon pointed out that a significant chunk of the State support flowing from the 2018 Budget was intended to offset the severance payments to the redundant workers”, GAWU reported.
The Union explained that GuySuCo, however, clarified this was not the case and the $6.3B allocation was intended solely and wholly to support the operations of the three (3) estates that would remain under GuySuCo’s control.
“We also queried about the $2.5B loan the Corporation recently obtained. GuySuCo advised that the sum was intended to sustain its operations until the 2018 first crop commences. We noted that Corporation’s explanation was vastly different from what we read in the press”, it said.
It is said that the admission by GuySuCo only serves to make matters worse as the beleaguered workers are now being told that they have no job and will not receive their legally entitled severance payments when the Corporation kicks them out on to the road on December 29, this year.
“This for the GAWU is most upsetting and only serves to rub salt in the wound. Our Union, in view of the Corporation’s depressing information, has requested that GuySuCo retains the workers in suitable employment until it is in a position to honour the workers severance payments”, GAWU said.