By BBN Staff: The People’s United Party (PUP) issued a statement a short while ago calling out the UDP for politicizing the very urgent situation facing stevedores and workers of the Port of Belize Limited.
“In a release issued today, the hypocritical UDP spent much time attacking the PUP and Michael Ashcroft, when it was Prime Minister Dean Barrow who met secretly with Lord Ashcroft in Miami to orchestrate a settlement for BTL which cost Belizeans over half a billion dollars. It is the UDP that has indebted Belizeans to Ashcroft to the tune of almost a BILLION dollars, thanks to Mr. Barrow’s trademark arrogance, incompetence and bad decisions,” the PUP expressed.
The PUP says that to blame the party that has been out of office for 12 years for a situation happening at the Port of Belize today is ludicrous.
The PUP further adds that the plight of the Stevedores has been a years-long one, and this Government, with all the power to effect meaningful change to protect the rights of the workers, never once entered the fray.
In fact, it is this UDP government who made stevedoring an essential service and in effect, handcuffing and stymying the earned industrial rights of the waterfront workers.
The PUP expressed solidarity with the workers of the Port of Belize Limited, those who have for days been protesting an arbitrary reduction in salaries and the threatened termination of thirty-six workers (36), including twenty-nine (29) Union workers and half of the Union’s negotiating team.
“This is classic union busting and requires nothing short of absolute condemnation and resistance. We have met with many of these workers and we believe that their stance is a just and righteous one,” the party added.
The PUP calls on the Government to spend less time on ‘stupid political attacks’ and more time in working actively to resolve the situation to ensure that the rights of all workers are protected.
“It is the government’s constitutional responsibility. We also call on the receivership to put on hold any termination and to return to the negotiating table to find a just and equitable solution to this matter. This is not the time for petty political gimmicks,” the release ended.