[Antigua] TUC Delegates Conference Fails Again

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[Antigua] TUC Delegates Conference Fails Again

Unread post by bimjim » Tue Dec 11, 2012

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[Antigua] TUC Delegates Conference Fails Again
Carol Williams
Tuesday, 11 December 2012 02:30

Antigua, St. John's

A major blow was dealt to the Trade Union Congress (TUC) last week when, for the first time in its history, it was unable to hold a delegates' conference for the second time in just over two weeks.

The 10th annual conference held at the Multi Purpose Cultural Centre was eight delegates short of a quorum, causing frustration among those present. Only delegates from LIAT engineers’ and pilots’ unions gave excuses for being absent.

The number of delegates are assigned to affiliated unions based on membership within the umbrella organisation.

Acting TUC President Ashworth Azille said unions had informed the organisation that their delegates would attend the conference.

"The question then arises, 'are we truly serious about what we are doing?’ because certainly from the perspective of the onlooker it tells them that the affiliates who are part of the TUC are not necessarily committed to the task they've committed themselves to," he said.

"Perhaps it may be an appropriate time for workers to ask whether they want to be a part of the TUC and if they do want to be a part of the TUC, if they do to participate fully in the life of the TUC."

At third attempt will be made to hold the conference on December 20, at which time the organisation is scheduled to hold general elections and receive reports from its representatives on the different boards.

The TUC Constitution states that if a quorum cannot be obtained at the third delegates’ conference then those present should proceed to conduct the business of the meeting.



"Whether or not the delegates arrive in their full numbers which is supposed to be 48, those present whether they represent two thirds or not will conduct the business of the congress. We believe that worker's interest must be placed first. There are a number of critical issues happening nationally which the TUC needs to speak to, and as such there needs to be a new executive to take on those charges," Azille explained.

Some of those issues, Azille outlined, are the liquidity problems at Social Security, challenges at the Labour Department, and disputes at work places.

Stressing the need for unity among unions, the trade union leader said the TUC was able to make strong representation on behalf of workers on the contentious tax on allowances and benefits.

The acting president urged unions outside the fold of the Congress to join the ranks.

"I strongly believe that in numbers we have greater strength, and in unity we have tremendous power and we would never truly understand the extend of that power unless we come together," he said.

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