PLP condemns PM’s’threat’towards BTC workers
The Progressive Liberal Party(PLP)lashed out against Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham in a statement released yesterday, regarding comments made by Ingraham in a speech he delivered in Grand Bahama over the weekend.
The PLP in the statement said they condemned Ingraham’s direct threat to Bahamas Telecommunications Company(BTC)workers, who have been agitating against the government’s plan to sell 51 percent of the company to British-based Cable and Wireless Communications(CWC), and suggested he speak to the union members instead of”acting the part of a political hack.”
“Mr. Ingraham cannot be seriously threatening the jobs of workers in this country at time like this,”the statement said.
“The threats are obvious and direct at the workers at BTC.
“We condemn them and call upon Mr. Ingraham to enter into sincere dialogue with the trade unions. This is not politics.”
Ingraham directed strong words toward BTC workers who walked off their jobs several times in the past two weeks in protest of the sale of BTC.
“Jobs are hard to find,”he said.
“And no one is able to stop you from cutting off your nose to spite your face; that is your face.
“But at the end of the day, you won’t have a nose that is the judgment you can make.”
The PLP contends that Ingraham has suggested the union’s motives are political and that the PLP is using the union’s battle to push its own political agenda.
However, thee statementnotes that the PLP has simply stood with the people as they voiced their concerns over the sale.
“Mr. Ingraham and his party keep trying to poison the well by suggesting that the unions are engaged in a political fight with him, with the PLP pushing a political agenda,”the statement said.
“If he wishes to turn it into a political fight that is his business, but the fact is the unions have legitimate grievances which they are seeking to address by lawful means.
“It is unconscionable and reprehensible and just plain lousy of a prime minister to threaten people’s jobs and to try and mix the PLP up in his lame attempt to defend an indefensible policy.
“The PLP simply stands with the people and their legitimate concerns.”
Bahamas Communications and Public Officers Union President Bernard Evans toldThe Nassau Guardianrecently that just as Ingraham is not prepared to back down from the deal with CWC, the unions are not prepared to back down from the fight agains CWC.
“The government needs to be very, very careful and examine this,”said Evans.
“Our agitation is to try to stop something that is wrong.
“We will continue with the industrial actions if they go ahead with Cable and Wireless.”
Evans added that neither the unions nor the BTC workerswill be threatenedby the remarks made byIngraham over the weekend.