PUBLIC Services Association (PSA) and National Trade Union Centre (NATUC) president, Watson Duke said yesterday they have nothing to fear.
At a media conference yesterday at PSA’s office on Abercromby Street, Port of Spain, Duke said the labour movement is committed to stand with all workers despite recent challenges with Petrotrin workers who are being placed on the breadline.
Duke said too many companies and its employees have been destroyed by the government and it was too big of an issue not to have repercussions.
“We are saying to the people of this country you have nothing to fear. Labour has come together yet another time.
“Petrotrin is too big to be interfered with and not have repercussions, WASA is too big to threaten and not have repercussions, Board of Inland Revenue is too big of a deal, and they can’t touch the Port of Authority and don’t expect repercussions. “At Local Government, you cannot frustrate the workers and don’t expect to have repercussions. We want to tell the Prime Minister to be very careful with your words tonight (last night) in your message to the nation. Wait until we have the meeting with you and then you can decide what you want to say.
Rethink your position and be careful with your words.”
Duke said the labour movement is united in the struggle, and sent a robust message to Dr Rowley that Friday’s Day of Rest and Reflection is on. He called on all workers to support the cause.
“Just stay home and rest.
“Make Friday a ‘Good Friday’.
“Take your children to the zoo, read a book, go to the park, but do not come out to labour for a government who is labouring to destroy you.
“While the PM is to address the nation tonight (yesterday) we want to warn the PM to choose his words carefully because tomorrow (today) at 10 am the labour movement will be gathering and we will be having a meeting in response directly to the PM’s statement.”
Duke demanded an urgent meeting with Rowley to treat with the issue of the workers who would be retrenched as a result of the closure of Petrotrin’s refinery.
President general of the Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU) Ancel Roget said unions are well on the road to victory, and all unions are standing in solidarity with the TT Unified Teachers Association (TTUTA).
“Any time labour comes together and unites, which ever government will be history.
“We have seen through pictures it is not just the OWTU alone, but it is union bashing at its highest coming from a government who, if it gets the opportunity, will be the end of the trade unions.
That will never happen now or ever in TT.
“The Minister of Education cannot threaten teachers and don’t expect repercussions, we stand in solidarity with TTUTA.”