The management of the Water and Sewerage Company (WASCO) will seek the intervention of the Ministry of Labour again to help resolve the ongoing industrial action being taken by employees who are members of the National Workers Union.
Managing Director of WASCO Vincent Hippolyte said despite attempts to meet “around the table” and discuss a solution to the impasse, “As we speak today there has not been a resolution satisfactory to both parties”.
Hippolyte said it is imperative that the impasse is settled soon.
“The service that WASCO provides is an essential service and that process is detailed in the legislature,” he said. “What it means now is that if the parties are unable to find a resolution, then we must seek the intervention of the Ministry of Labour, which we have done once, and so we may have to ask the Ministry of Labour to bring us together again, so that we can have a look at where we are, and have a look at how that impasse can be resolved.”
He added: “Anywhere in the process, you are talking about two parties that must find a resolution and the resolution must be one that is sustainable and reasonable. Unless you can reach that point then it is very difficult for you to actually find closure. This is why in in law there is a process that will help this through. So the parties have been meeting to try to find a resolution, they have not been able to so, it has moved to mediation by the minister. So the minister’s intervention is going to come in and that is keeping with the provisions of the Labour Code.”
In a previous news clip, Hippolyte noted that the employees on strike are actually the ones involved in the maintenance and repair of faulty pipelines. He said this is causing “some delays” and “slowdown.”
However, in the meantime, the managing director had said the company has put measures in place to ensure that it can respond to distribution system issues, such as leaks involving its main pipelines, as soon as possible.
“… we have some measures in place where we are responding to leaks and so on as they show, but you know whenever you have industrial action you are never performing at your optimum,” he admitted.