Of the 4763 sugar workers who were made redundant by the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) as part of that State entity’s restructuring programme, more than 350 who were attached to the Wales Estate did not receive severance payment on Friday, as others across the industry did.
According to a source close to the sugar sector, the workers are worried as to when they will be paid their severance. Many of them were hoping to be receive their severance payments by Friday last.
The National Assembly had, in early November, given approval for almost $2.5 billion to be released to cater for the remaining severance due to 4,723 sugar workers.
Government, earlier this year, opted to pay some workers half of their severance, while a promise was made to pay the remaining half in latter part of the year.
The Department of Public Information (DPI) announced last week that Government had kept its promise to pay out the remaining fifty percent of severance to those receiving amounts in excess of $500,000 by the end of 2018.
In fact, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo had given all assurances that the Wales workers, who previously were prevented from receiving severance pay by the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU)-filed court action, would receive their outstanding benefits.
He had also said that Government would respect the ruling of the court and pay interest of between four and six per cent on the outstanding amounts.
Despite those assurances, INews understands that several Wales cane harvesters involved in that very court case were not paid their severance, which has been paid to their other ex-colleagues.