The Public Service Union has issued a schedule of their planned anti-corruption protests against the Government of Belize. The release notes that the PSU maintains their position and are set to protest during the budget debate. Image Above: Most roads and bridges in Belize blocked by protests 19 April 2021.
The Public Service Union of Belize (PSU) takes this opportunity to update its General Membership and fellow Public Officers on the ongoing Budget Consultations and the way forward. The Government position remains the same and the Minister of Public Service has written to the Joint Unions advising that he is considering invoking Section 106 (3) of the Belize Constitution which states, Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, the Governor-General, acting in accordance with the advice of the Minister or Ministers responsible for the public service given after consultation with the recognised representatives of the employees or other persons or groups within the public service as may be considered appropriate, may make regulations on any matter relating to- (c) the fixing of salaries and privileges.
Furthermore, following our notice to the Minister of Labour of the existence of a trade dispute between the Government and the Union, the Minister of Labour has responded advising that he does not intend to refer the trade dispute to the Tribunal as contemplated under section 11 of Settlement of Disputes in Essential Services Act, Cap 298, since the legal framework for such referral and the final resolution of the disputes thereunder, in so far as they apply to public officers, are inconsistent with section 106(3) of the Constitution.
As it relates to our demand for good governance in relation to the full implementation of UNCAC and other transparency and accountability legislation our position is maintained and reinforced. The Government for its part, has informed that shortage in legal drafters will delay the good governance demands. The PSU finds this excuse unacceptable as any reform and recovery plan must be hinged of good governance. We shall therefore press forward until the demanded legislation is in place. As advised by membership, the Union’s position “No Salary Cut” remains unchanged. Please see below the action plan for the upcoming week: