Friday, October 5, 2012

Roget surprise that Seamen's Union not siding with PNM

File: Michael Annisette (right) with Ancel Roget
The leader of the Joint Trade Union Movement (JTUM) Ancel Roget told the Express newspaper Thursday he is "very surprised" to learn that the Seamen and Waterfront Workers Trade Union (SWWTU) is not supporting the the People's National Movement (PNM).

The SWWTU was one of the groups that met with the PNM last Friday and pledged support for a declaration to work together with the PNM. However, in a media release on Wednesday, SWWTU leader Michael Annisette said the union "never authorised anyone to sign the declaration on our (SWWTU's) behalf".

Annisette's release added that "anyone who purports to have signed on behalf of the SWWTU would have signed without the express permission of the president general and/or the secretary general of the Union who are the only executive officers with the authority to authorise the signing of any declaration on behalf of the SWWTU."

But Roget, who is also the president general of the Oilfields Workers' Trade Union (OWTU), expressed shocked at the SWWTU position. 

"I am very surprised to hear Annisette say that since the SWWTU general secretary was at both the meeting with the JTUM on the Tuesday and then the meeting with the civil groups on Friday," the Express quoted Roget as saying.

Annisette and Roget are co-founders of JTUM, which comprises several trade unions. Roget said JTUM would have to discuss Annisette's statement when the group meets next Tuesday.

The Express is speculating that Annisette's position might be based on an on-going legal matter between Annisette and PNBM leader Keith Rowley. Quoting an unnamed source close to JTUM the paper said the legal issue caused the separation between Rowley and Annisette.

In 2011, Rowley threatened to sue Annisette alleging that the SWWTU leader defamed him in statements both within and outside the Parliament. Court hearings on the matter are scheduled for January 29, February 7 and February 19 next year.

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Jai & Sero

Jai & Sero

Our family at home in Toronto 2008

Our family at home in Toronto 2008
Amit, Heather, Fuzz, Aj, Jiv, Shiva, Rampa, Sero, Jai