Sugar industry strike political – Agriculture Minister

[File Photo]


Agriculture Minister, Noel Holder
Agriculture Minister, Noel Holder

[] – Agriculture Minister Noel Holder is of the view that current strike action organised by the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) is politically motivated since the sugar industry is now performing under a newly installed Interim Management Committee (IMC).

In an invited comment, Minister Holder told the Government Information Agency (GINA), “one of the problems with the sugar industry is that it has been used as a political football, and you have seen the result of that is the reduction in productivity over the years and the putting of square pegs in round holes by the former Government.”

He advised that the coalition Government has taken a hands-off policy allowing managers to administer.

“We have put in an interim management team, you have seen the productivity has gone up. In fact we have surpassed targets over the last three or four weeks,” the Minister stated.

Minister Holder believes that GAWU, having seen that, is now on the defensive and being a political organisation is trying to disrupt that process. He further explained that the Commission of Inquiry (COI) that was established to look into Guysuco’s affairs had a GAWU representative as one of its members.

President of the Guyana Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU) Komal Chand
President of the Guyana Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU) Komal Chand

“So although the results of the COI have not yet been taken to Cabinet, GAWU is aware of it because they had a man on the Commission who was part of the results, so I suspect what’s going on here it’s political and the government does not want to get involved in this kind of thing. We want management to handle it and we want GAWU to be responsible individuals and look at what they are going to do to the industry,” Minister Holder explained.  

Sugar workers began industrial action yesterday for increased wages and fringe benefits.

People’s Progressive Party (PPP) General Secretary Clement Rohee has since denied any involvement in the strike action on the part of the PPP.

According to the General Secretary, “we consider it as an industrial action staged by sugar workers…Is it not justifiable for the sugar workers to demand more money.”



  1. Min Holder is incompetent.. and should be fired…you ever look at how he speak with the press or give a public speech…bend his head down and read and read and read and cant read properly

  2. Let them strike and then close down the industry…. The PPP never came clean as to the decline of the industry and those sheep still were gullible enough to listen to everything that party force fed them….. Good riddance to them all…typical estate mentality the lot of them

  3. Just blame it on opposition. you guys are good in this. Sugar,rice,gold and you name it everything is gone…! why don’t you take responsibility and try to fix the problem than blaming the opposition. Remember you are in the government and you have to fix it. It is easy to blame others ad when in government you are there to fix and the opposition is to blame you.

  4. Firstly don’t be impressed by this performance Mr Holder. Guysuco still producing at 50 cents a pound.
    Secondly i have to agree with you that GAWU is not making the process easy for the Government and sugar workers.
    Accept the recommendation that the Demerara Estates will have to be closed and just start the process of closure.The sugar workers would forever be ungrateful to any government besides the PPP.
    This pattern of strike is the beginning of a process to destabilise the coalition and they will come hard and strong.

  5. let the country goes on strike and see how this apnu/afc government handle you promise us 10 percent increase we have no see a cent increase . the entire public servant sector need to strike show them we will no tolerate this. for them or anyone .

  6. The best thing for the sugar industry is for it to be close down because it is like a leech on tax payers back and let GAWU stop with there political gimmicks


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.