Georgetown, April 14, 2016 – The Guyana Sugar Corporation Inc. (GuySuCo) hereby wishes to clarify the statements made in a joint Press Release by the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers Union (GAWU) and the National Association of Agricultural, Commercial and Industrial Employees (NAACIE), titled ‘GuySuCo to close LBI operations’.
On April 5, 2016 at a meeting at the La Bonne Intention (LBI) Estate between GuySuCo and GAWU, the union was informed of the need for the two parties to meet to discuss the completion of the integration process. A date was agreed upon, hence the meeting on the April 12, 2016. Officials of GuySuCo met with representatives of the two Unions on the ‘Finalization of the Integration of East Demerara Estates’ on the April 12, 2016.
Since in 2011, GuySuCo, GAWU and NAACIE met with each worker in the LBI factory over a five (5) day period to discuss the closure of the LBI factory and their redeployment. The factory was then closed in the same year and workers were redeployed to other positions within the Enmore Estate. In some instances the authorized manning levels were exceeded to accommodate the workers.
GuySuCo and GAWU were fully involved in that process. Yet, the integration progress was not completed, since there are still two Mill Docks, two Field Workshops, two Field Laboratories, two Field Offices and two stores, within the EDE operations at LBI.
The meeting held on 12 April, 2016, was to discuss the process of completing the integration which will see the Finance and Human Resources Departments moving to Enmore, the consolidation of the mill dock, the field workshop, the stores and the field laboratory from LBI with similar operations at Enmore.
It should be noted that the full integration process should have been completed since 2011 but this was not done, to the further detriment of the economics of the EDE.
This state of affairs must be compared with Albion Estate which produces more than twice the amount of sugar as produced by the East Demerara Estates and operates efficiently with one Mill Dock, one Field Workshop, one Field Laboratory and one Mill Dock.
Interestingly, the Unions have requested further information and have committed to work with GuySuCo to finalize the integration process over the coming weeks. Therefore, GuySuCo finds it strange, that having been a part of the integration process over the years and having made commitments to see the process to completion at recent meetings, the Unions would now issue this contradictory statement to the press.
GUYANA SUGAR CORPORATION INC. APRIL 14, 2016