The submission of evidence in the Oilfield’s Workers Trade Union’s industrial relations offence complaint against Petrotrin came to a close this morning.
The cross-examination of the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance Vishnu Dhanpaul concluded with senior counsel Douglas Mendes, who is representing the OWTU, attempting to ascertain just when a government guarantee for an outstanding loan of USD $850m was granted to Petrotrin.
The second hearing of the Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU)'s industrial relations offence over the scheduled closure of Petrotrin has been postponed as an Industrial Court judge fell ill.
OWTU president general Ancil Roget was expected to return to the witness stand when the case resumed at the Industrial Court's headquarters in Port-of-Spain, this morning.
Lawyers representing the parties, a large group of union members and members of the media were only informed of the issue after waiting in court for almost an half an hour.
Oilfields Workers’ Trade Union president general Ancel Roget says he does not accept being retrenched by state-owned Petrotrin and as far as he is concerned he remains an employee of the company.
In an interview with the Guardian Media moments ago, Roget confirmed receiving his retrenchment letter last week but said it was hand-delivered to his office at the OWTU’s Paramount Building and never given to him personally.
President General of the Oilfields Workers Trade Union Ancel Roget has been retrenched by State Owned Company Petrotrin.
Roget last week quietly received his termination letter from the company, which includes a significant benefit package.
The Trade Union leader has been working at Petrotrin for over thirty years and has kept his job at the company although he has been on secondment to the OWTU.
Roget was employed at Petrotrin’s Trinmar operations as a technician and rose up the ranks to become OWTU Branch President of the Pont Fortin based Trinmar.
The Communications Workers Union (CWU) is holding a candlelight vigil outside the Telecommunications Services of T&T’s head office on Edward Street, Port-of-Spain, this evening to counteract what it says is the "dark cloud" now hanging over the company.
In a text earlier today, the CWU invited members to attend a protest action from 4 pm to 6 pm and then a candlelight vigil just after from 6 pm to 7 pm.
Oilfields Workers’ Trade Union president general Ancel Roget is urging Petrotrin workers not to accept any termination packages from the company until an appeal of the matter is heard in the Appeal Court.
In an early morning text exchange with Guardian Media hours after Justice Appeal Charmaine Pemberton blocked the injunction awarded to the OWTU by the Industrial Court, Roget said he planned to advise the workers to not accept any package from the company "while the injunction appeal is being heard."
Petrotrin can resume termination of workers this morning after a High Court judge halted the injunction granted to the Oilfields’ Workers Trade Union hours ago.
Justice of Appeal Charmaine Pemberton blocked the injunction awarded by the Industrial Court around 11.32 last night and fixed the hearing to resume before a three-member panel of the Appeal Court for October 18.
How is it that a company like Petrotrin, earning $2 billion a month, needs a “lifeline of urgency” as Finance Minister Colm Imbert claims?
That’s the query from the Oilfields Workers’ Trade Union yesterday, following Imbert’s declaration during a media briefing on Monday.