[www.inewsguyana.com] – The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC), known for its vocal support for the APNU-AFC government, has recanted from its earlier support for the 50% ministerial pay hike.
The GTUC in a release stated: “The citizens’ response to the increase of remuneration for ministers and parliamentarians calls for commitment from the government that would result in decision that society can accept and respect. While there may be an absent of scientific polling to gauge overall opinion on pertinent issues in society, the continuous, sustained and heightened voices, inclusive of that from varied and unexpected sources, are enough to warrant the government’s judicious attention.”
The release added: “On 11th May the citizens fired the PPP/C for their arrogance, abuse of State resources and laws, and contempt for the masses. On this same day the citizens hired the APNU+AFC to form the new government. By this single most important act the citizens sent a message that PPP’s hubris and violations will not be tolerated from the APNU+AFC. We are witnessing this today in the reaction to the salary issue.”
The GTUC contends; “2015 has seen growth in our politics and citizens’ activism. GTUC reminds the politicians the power and authority they use are vested in them by the citizens. Ultimately politicians are accountable to the citizens and must never lose sight of this principle. As this salary outcry is increasing and being sustained beyond the proverbial ‘nine days’ it requires good sense prevailing on the part of the government.GTUC’s position on the salary issue is that of process. It is our belief that if you start wrong, you will end wrong. The product from the application of a wrong process will be questionable and this in part is driving the outcries today.”
The trade union body says that “ his nation must therefore see reinstatement of collective bargaining and respect for fundamental rights and freedoms as a matter of priority. Collective bargaining must commence in the Public Sector, which will ensure the resetting of relativity in the Wage and Salary Structure, from which ministers, parliamentarians and other public servants will earn wages/salary and conditions of employment as a result of the process.”
This comes after Governance Minister Raphael Trotman on Wednesday stated that the electorate should trust the APNU+AFC administration in its decision to hike the salaries of Ministers.
Trotman stated that he does not believe the increases are “astronomical”; adding that if comparative studies were to be done across the region, it would show the proposed salaries are not above the norm.