ANCEL Roget, president general of the Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU), believes unseen hands are trying to capsize, stall or stop Patriotic Energies and Technologies Company Ltd from acquiring and operating the Pointe-a-Pierre refinery and port.
Roget said there seem to be attempts to tempt the company from walking away from this process.
He also suggested there was a disconnect between the Prime Minister's instructions to finalise the process and what is being done by the Trinidad Petroleum Holdings Company (TPHL) team which has been meeting with the Patriotic directors and legal representative.
Roget called on Rowley and the inter-ministerial team to intervene and take control of what is happening at those discussions and have the agreement signed before August 10.
He said when Dr Rowley told the union on July 15 he was waiting to sign off on the agreement, the union expected it to be a quick process, and could not understand why it was taking so long.
“Too many stumbling blocks are being placed in our way,” he said at a news conference on Monday to update the country and workers on the status of the acquisition.
He said the union had a marathon 11-hour session on July 23 with the negotiating team to iron out six issues. But instead of reducing the document by those six issues, he said the team added21 more, some of which are not related to the process.
He said the negotiating team now wants the inter-ministerial team to look at the new draft which will set back the process.
Roget said he hoped this is not a political caper, because tens of millions of dollars of OWTU’s savings had been invested in this project to bring relief to thousand of workers who lost their jobs and, he said, have not stopped crying from November 30, 2018 to today.