Union threatens to “expose” Post Office manager

Antigua Observer: 

The president of the Antigua Trades and Labour Union, Wigley George, is calling on the acting post master general to apologise for allegedly calling his female staff “filthy,” or risk being “exposed.”

Over 200 striking workers at the General Post Office are demanding an apology from their boss, whom they claim verbally abused them  on Tuesday during a meeting.

The workers told OBSERVER media that they are not prepared to work with the disrespect allegedly coming from the manager, and George said they have the support of the union.

“Every single person in the meeting said he (the acting Post Master General) said so. It is not the first time I’ve been in meetings with this guy,” George said.

On Tuesday, employees walked off the job complaining about several issues, including one bathroom being locked and all the staff being forced to join long lines to use the remaining bathrooms.

Other reasons including the dusty and humid conditions of the High Street building that is currently being renovated also influenced the post office staff to take industrial action.

George, along with the acting permanent secretary responsible for the Post Office, Sandra Joseph, as well as post office staff, members of the health department and Gomes met to determine what the workers should do in the interim. However, before being dismissed for the rest of the day, the workers demanded an apology from Gomes.

“I am saying to you, I know what I said. I reported to you what the construction workers found in the bathroom and they said the bathroom was filthy,” Gomes rebutted.

But, his statement was immediately challenged by angry staff who said that over a dozen people were present when Gomes made the “rude and disrespectful comment.”

The workers shouted

“You lie. You ah lie. Mr. Gomes.”

“He is a liar, nothing tarl go so.”

“He said we are a bunch of filthy staff … Ms. Joseph, he said we are a bunch of filthy staff.”

Their behaviour caused the permanent secretary, to advise them to go home while Gomes shook his head in disagreement with the allegations that the staff had made against him.

He left the meeting without offering an apology.

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