Cabinet approves $1B advance to pay GuySuCo workers

-PM hopeful move will avert possible strike

Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo yesterday announced that there is the possibility that sugar workers will go on strike since they have not been paid, although Cabinet has approved a $1 billion advance to the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) for wages.

Speaking at a public engagement on the implementation of Value Added Tax (VAT) on education at the National Cultural Centre, Nagamootoo said GuySuCo approached Cabinet on Tuesday for the sum so that payment could be made yesterday.

“Tuesday they came: ‘we have no money to pay wages for sugar workers.’ So, we [Cabinet] discussed it and we agreed that we would advance $1 billion dollars to GuySuCo to pay wages to sugar workers but we understand that the arrangement has not been made to effect the payment,” he said.

He was hopeful that a nationwide strike would not result from this even as he acknowledged the possibility.

He also took the time to stress that “within the first 20 months of coming into office, we [APNU+AFC] have advanced $32 billion to save the… the livelihood of the sugar workers.” These advances, he explained, were used to subsidise GuySuCo to pay wages.

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