Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : August 25th 2015 Contents A16
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Tuesday, August 25, 2015
Senior officials of Lake Asphalt of T&T (1978)
Ltd (LATT) were barred from entering and leaving
their offices yesterday as protest intensified over
stalled wage negotiations.
Around 10 am hundreds of workers gathered at
the entrance of LATT s main offices in La Brea where
they continued to voice their anger over the company s
refusal to pay a 25 per cent general wage increase.
Chief executive officer Leary Hosein, who was
among those blocked, said he was unable to attend
"I am being kept out. They have continued their
shut down action with no signs of relenting soon.
They are now gathered at the entrance to the main
office so no one can enter or leave. I had a meeting
to attend this morning so I was not there," Hosein
He agreed that workers were incensed about a
decision not to allow casual workers inside the plant.
"The recruiting was stopped last week as I indicated.
With the permanent workers on strike there is no
supervision for the casuals. There could not have
Protest heats up at Lake Asphalt...
been any recruitment today since no instruc-
tions were given to do so," Hosein said.
He added that LATT will resume the
intake of casual workers once the situation
returns to normal.
However, vice president of the Contract
and General Workers Trade Union Joseph
Phillip said workers came to do their duties
peacefully yesterday but became incensed
when casual workers were turned back.
"The casual workers are meant to sup-
plement the permanent workers. There is
work that has to be done on a daily basis.
They picked some casual workers and called
them in to work but they then told them
that they are no longer required. This is
disrespect!" Phillip said.
He added: "The upper management
including Leary Hosein will be responsible
for the downfall of this company. Leary
Hosein made us protest today!"
He said management had put the workers
in a position whereby they had no choice
but to continue protests.
Negotiations between the workers and
the company broke down two Fridays ago.
The company has offered 12 per cent, but
the union is demanding nothing less than
14 per cent. They also want a consolidated
Cost of Living Allowance but the company
The union has since referred the matter
to the Ministry of Labour for conciliation.
Managers blocked from entering offices
Minister of Planning and Sustainable Develop-
ment Dr Bhoe Tewarie projects that central Trinidad
is an indispensable area in its growth pole pillars
for economic development.
Addressing a political meeting in Caparo on Thurs-
day, Tewarie said some areas targeted for development
are Preysal, Chaguanas, Carapichaima and Couva
as several acres of lands are being identified for eco-
nomic and social activities.
Tewarie is the People s Partnership candidate for
Caroni Central in the September 7 general election.
He said Chaguanas must become the major hub
for economic and decentralisation in central Trinidad.
He said the economic development board has
identified five specific economic and social trans-
formation areas throughout T&T, all of which have
been researched and studied.
He explained that a growth pole is a particular
area where development strategies are targeted at
the core with the intent for growth and development
to spread to the periphery.
Quoting from the PP s 2015 election manifesto,
Tewarie said the growth pole strategy typically
involves directing investment at a targeted number
locations in order to stimulate economic activity
that will propel economic growth and development.
"The thinking behind growth pole development
is that it will stimulate sectoral growth through
investment, construction, infrastructural development
"Growth of sectors of geographical regions will
in turn promote better distribution of wealth and
more diversified development of the country," he
"A spatial approach allows for more effective co-
ordination and focused investments and policy
reforms that will maximise private sector investment.
Investors can see the advantage in cost and efficiency
of firms working in close proximity, especially in
terms of success to land and shared infrastructure,"
Central to benefit
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