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No GYD$50,000 bonus for sugar workers- Finance Minister

Finance Minister Winston Jordan says that the government will not be able to pay sugar workers a GYD$50,000 bonus as requested by the Guyana Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU).

GAWU in a release Thursday had stated that the Finance Minister had been written requesting that the same bonus given to public servants be given to sugar workers.

“Bearing in mind that the pittance API award is to be paid until March next year, GAWU wrote to the Minister of Finance on (Tuesday) December 15, 2015 who announced the award, requesting that the $50,000 Christmas Bonus award to Public Sector employees be awarded also to the sugar workers who are employees also of a state-owned enterprise.”

Jordan in an invited comment however told Demerara Waves that GAWU’s request cannot be facilitated.The Finance Minister said that the Union “could ask” but as far as government, complying that is unknown.

“The money that we have paid to the public servants is more or less all that we had and we thought that they needed to benefit,” said Jordan.

“We don’t have any more money – not that this stage,” Jordan added.

GAWU said that sugar workers began protesting on December 16 and there are plans to continue protest actions into the New Year.

“They feel justifiably that they have been singled out for discrimination notwithstanding the acknowledgement of their hard and dedicated work which has led to the industry breaking new records including the surpassing of the Corporation’s production target for the first time in eleven (11) years,” GAWU stated.