June 04, 2021
SCORES of Progressive Liberal Party supporters as well as union members and leaders gathered at the national stadium on Friday morning despite a notice from police a day earlier that no motorcade had been sanctioned to take place on Labour Day.
As the crowd converged at the site on University Drive, some wearing PLP paraphernalia, police stopped many of them from entering. This angered organisers of the event.
“This is a shocking position for the workers and indeed all Bahamians who are minded to ensure that good governance requires the involvement of the people,” Obie Ferguson, president of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), told reporters at the stadium, which was the planned starting point of the motorcade.
He said he wrote a letter to Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis on May 4 requesting permission for labour leaders and workers to hold a Labour Day motorcade. He said on Thursday at 4.21pm, he received a call from Dr Minnis’ personal secretary who indicated that senior health officials had recommended the motorcade not go ahead.
“This is very vexing,” Mr Ferguson said. “I’m aware, I think I’ve been practicing law for 27, 28 years, my specialty is employment law. You explain to me how a government or how the police officers can stop me from driving from my house to my office, from my office anywhere, as long as I comply with the law? This is purely disrespect.”
Union leaders said the people will have the final say at the ballot box.
Mr Ferguson urged workers everywhere to register to vote and “vote for those people who have your interest.”
PLP deputy leader Chester Cooper was at the site.
“I am happy to be here to stand with the labour movement today. Solidarity forever,” Mr Cooper said.
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