Hatchet Job by Guyana Times for removal of GAWU President Komal Chand.

Guerrilla/gorilla warfare in the PPP

Maybe there are persons in Guyana who do not know the connection of Bharrat Jagdeo to the newspaper owned by Bobby Ramroop. Kaieteur News on several occasions has openly stated that Mr. Jagdeo is co-owner of the Guyana Times. I believe he is. Mr. Jagdeo then can place any distortion or mischief or propaganda or fake news or alternative facts or personal venom in the paper.
When there appears to be a news item in the Jagdeo/Ramroop newspaper attacking the President of GAWU, Komal Chand, the poisonous statements against Chand suggested that it was a hatchet job arranged by Jagdeo and others in the PPP. The reporting was opaque. For example, the newspaper said it interviewed several workers but there were no specific descriptions – names of sugar workers, estates visited.
The newspaper quotes unnamed sugar workers as levelling some damning accusations against Chand and cited several of them calling for his resignation.
Chand fired back saying that it was an orchestrated hit job and he hinted at the PPP leadership. The pieces began to fall in place when Anil Nandlall faulted Chand for not confronting the government when the union met it last week over the severance pay issue. Then long-standing PPP sympathiser, Ramon Gaskin, came out on Thursday demanding that Chand must go because he was and is a failure.
As the controversy swirls, there are some interesting emanations from some PPP leaders which point to a war within the PPP. First, PPP Parliamentarian Indra Chandrapal took the side of Chand saying that there are dark motives behind the verbal assault on Chand. Obviously she means within the PPP since, it was the Guyana Times that carried the accusations against Chand and not any other media houses.
Then when asked about the Chand affair, Gail Teixeira stayed clear of any criticism of Chand, saying quite unambiguously, that GAWU and the PPP are two different organisations and see things differently and saying unambiguously again that she does not want to comment on the situation.
Juan Edghill when asked to speak on the alleged failure of Chand in the recent confabulation with the Government chose not to offer an opinion.
Analyzing all the angles in this back and forth drama, it would appear that there are serious battles taking place in the PPP’s temple and Bharrat Jagdeo is in the middle of it. If we assume that the Guyana Times hit job was the work of Jagdeo (and from all appearances it looks so), then several PPP leaders cannot be that naïve not to know this. But many of them are not backing their leader’s position on Chand. Why? The situation inside the PPP is kind of ironically complex.
With each passing day, as the coalition makes terrible mistakes, the PPP war room senses election victory. But ironically this prediction has inherent problems. Several top leaders in the PPP do not want Jagdeo to run even if he wins the two-term court case in the Caribbean Court of Justice.
They feel Jagdeo had fifteen years in control and that the mantle should pass on. Even if he loses the court case, some big wigs in the PPP do not want him to be the face of the 2020 campaign. They feel that the small percentage that the PPP needs to carry them to 51 percent Jagdeo cannot bring.
The mathematics is not hard to do. With all Indian votes going to it, to still win the PPP will need a huge percentage of Amerindian votes. But herein lies the headache. Who says all Indians will vote for it? Who says it will get a huge slice of Amerindian votes? The PPP will not reach 50 percent. It needs a small percentage from African Guyanese, the ballots of the Indians that do not like Jagdeo and an increase in Amerindian votes. Many feel that such a configuration is possible if you have a new Presidential/Prime Ministerial team without Jagdeo.
The headache becomes a nightmare because Jagdeo is not going anywhere. What the Chand story did was to open up old wounds. Some PPP stalwarts believe Jagdeo’s confrontationist style is going to play into the hands of the APNU-AFC leadership and could only drive fear in Indians who may migrate quicker or adopt an introverted life style.
Secondly, they feel that some forms of compromise and concessions are what Cheddi Jagan would want and it will rebound to the electoral and political favour of the PPP. The attack on Chand is the first salvo fired by the Jagdeo faction. As the months move on and as 2019 nears, the fight will get nastier.

Original Post

NAACIE disturbed by Guyana Times article

 
 

Dear Editor,
The National Association of Agricultural, Commercial and Industrial Employees (NAACIE) was very disturbed after reading what can only be described as a mischievous and obviously misleading article titled “Sugar workers call for Komal Chand to resign” which appeared in the Guyana Times newspaper of January 23, 2018.
Our Union, which also attended the January 19, 2018 meeting with the Government, finds it necessary to clear the air and set the record straight and point out that both NAACIE and the Guyana Agricultural Workers Union (GAWU) did not agree with the Government to pay the workers their severance payments in installments. Both Unions insisted that the workers ought to receive their payments at once in keeping with the Termination of Employment and Severance Pay Act. For the two Unions, this is sacrosanct and, therefore, it is disappointing that some persons have decided to engage in such mischief-making. We cannot help but wonder what are their real motivations.
Our Union and GAWU have shared fraternal relations which go back decades and, in recent times, have stood together to denounce and condemn the plans by the Guyana Sugar Corporation and the Government to reduce the footprint of the sugar industry. We, like GAWU, have argued that the decision is wrong and poorly thought out and will bring more bad than good. We have endorsed GAWU’s plans advanced at the February 17, 2017 meeting with Government officials recognising the several positive suggestions to retain and safeguard the sugar industry.
Similarly, we were equally impressed by GAWU’s presentation which was ably presented by the Union’s President, Mr Komal Chand at the January 19, 2018 meeting. That presentation, we noted, advanced several critical considerations to protect and safeguard the well-being of the workers who have been affected by the callous sugar plans. That presentation as well was also endorsed by our Union.
The NAACIE must share too that it recognised the importance of meeting and engaging with the Government, as the owner of the sugar industry.
We took into account that engagements with employers are part of any Union’s normal activities and critical to representing effectively workers concerns and demands. Had we chosen not to meet with the Government then, in effect, we would have given up another arena for struggling on behalf of our members interests at this difficult time for them and their families.
Bearing such important considerations in mind, engagement with the Government will be done in good faith and with the workers interest and future as our motivation.
NAACIE reiterates that it will continue to work in the best interest of its members. We acknowledge and recognise the importance in these times of working with our sister Union in the sugar industry. We recognise too that various efforts will be afoot, coming from different quarters, to weaken and undermine our unity and militancy. Our unions have a sound understanding of our members’ views with respect to their welfare matters and with our constant meetings with them we believe that they are fully supportive of the leadership given by union officers, including Mr Komal Chand. The public attack on him is unwarranted, unfair and can be seen as divisive with the intention of weaken the workers cause. We are happy with the astuteness, courage and sacrifice in his representation of workers’ cause. It is no wonder that Mr Chand is seen as one of the country’s foremost labour leaders. Vigilance is our watch word as we continue our struggle for the workers’ rights and benefits.

Respectfully,
General Secretary
NAACIE

Editor’s note: The large number of workers who contacted Guyana Times has claimed that severance pay is stipulated by the Termination of Employment and Severance Pay Act (TESPA) and there was no point for negotiations on that matter by GAWU and NAACIE.
Secondly, the workers outlined that what GAWU and NAACIE should have been negotiating for is the non-closure of the sugar estates.

Komal Chand has been GAWU President for about three decades. Komal is not President for Life. His tenure has an expiry date. However, any move to remove Komal now because of his meeting with Granger last week is uncalled for and inappropriate. Guyana Times is playing dirty tricks with Komal.

Gilbakka posted:

Komal Chand has been GAWU President for about three decades. Komal is not President for Life. His tenure has an expiry date. However, any move to remove Komal now because of his meeting with Granger last week is uncalled for and inappropriate. Guyana Times is playing dirty tricks with Komal.

Totally agreed,why calling for his removal now.

I told you people, Granger plans to appease the PPP constituency and  bring Nagamootoo back into the pic for 2020.  Mitwah nephew gave me a hint of things to come in the run up to 2020.  Komal Chand will throw his support behind Nagamootoo, watch and see!   PPP will be outmaneuvered in their own house!

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