Bauxite workers’ refunds delivered to GRA from RUSAL

DPI, Guyana, Monday, January 08, 2018

Bauxite workers attached to the Russian Bauxite Company – RUSAL Guyana, can now claim overtime payments following the handing over of some $173M in refunds by the company to the Guyana Revenue Authority (GRA).

Minister within the Ministry of Social Protection with responsibility for Labour, Keith Scott, explained the refunds for the bauxite workers will require a specific procedure before they can be uplifted.

Hon. Keith Scott, Minister within the Ministry of Social Protection with responsibility for Labour.

“The correct procedure is for the workers to make a claim to GRA for overtime payment. That process was communicated to the union (Guyana Bauxite and General Workers’ Union) and all parties concerned, by the GRA,” Minister Scott explained.

The Minister said, with the help of the union, and adhering to the required procedure, will ensure that the bauxite workers are paid in a timely manner.

“It’s for the union to do what the union deductions entitle them to do; that is to make proper representation on behalf of the workers. What prevents the union from going to the union hall, or building a tent and inviting the concerned workers and say ‘we are going to help you fill your forms of reclamation to the GRA?’ That is what a union should be doing,” said the Minister.

In 2016, RUSAL workers were asked to pay taxes on their premium and overtime payments.

In January 2017, a group of employees representing the workers of RUSAL Guyana met with the central executive of the Guyana Bauxite and General Workers Union (GB&GWU) in Linden and outlined the urgency for the matter concerning their tax-free overtime payment to be dealt.

Following several deliberations with the company in 2017, Minister Scott issued a letter to RUSAL in November demanding the effective release of payments to the employees under the company’s employ since October 1, 2016.

 

By: Crystal Stoll

 

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