Protest action against the proposed five percent increase for public servants intensified yesterday. The numbers tripled from last week.“Dear Mr. President de 5% ent even reach de $5000 note”Yesterday, protestors were joined by Opposition Leader David Granger, AFC’s Khemraj Ramjattan and GPSU President, Patrick Yarde.Scores of protesters lined the parapets outside Office of the President both on South and Vlissengen Roads.A Partnership for National Unity (APNU)’s David Granger is calling on the Ministry to explain why the money that was passed since April will only be paid in December.“All you are being confronted with are lies and more lies.  According to Granger,Eddie Robinson Indians Jersey, Government had commenced the process by saying that because of the budget cut,Jamaal Williams Youth Jersey, it couldn’t pay more.“The joint opposition only slashed the expenditure and there were no cuts in revenue….so where did the money go?” Granger queried yesterday.Granger said that his party is standing in solidarity with the workers, but is not going to get involved in the negotiation between the union and the government.“We support the workers and we hope to get a favourable outcome so that the workers can earn a decent living wage.”Leader of the Alliance for Change, Khemraj Ramjattan,Kolo Toure Liverpool Jersey, was adamant that there was a clear allocation made for a 15 percent increase.“The National Assembly made this allocation for the increase -at least a 10 to 15 percent – for all public servants,” Ramjattan said.According to Ramjattan, the “little explanation” offered by the Finance Minister Ashni Singh is full of holes. He said that the explanation that the Minister has given is expected to be appreciated by the media and the Guyanese people.According to Ramjattan, Government had initially said that the opposition had cut the budget,Georginio Wijnaldum Jersey, but since that explanation fell through it is now saying that this was money intended for promotion and additional staff.He explained that the March budget had catered for all the increases in each of theAlliance for Change Leader Khemraj Ramjattan, along with GPSU’s Patrick Yard on the frontline yesterday.ministries and also in each subset of the ministries.“This $4.4B is a totally separate set of money from what we allocated for an increase during the course of the year.”Ramjattan opined that Government must have used the money which was budgeted for public servants for “some slush fund to deal with other expenditures, probably which we cut in the budget.“That is not how you treat your public servants.”Yarde said that Government must explain to workers how the money which was approved by the National Assembly for the Revision of Wages and Salaries (which would have at least guaranteed a 10-15% increase) was utilized.He described the government as ‘anti-working class’ and expressed his disappointment with President Donald Ramotar on this subject.Since the announcement of the five percent increase by government there has been protest by public servants in several pockets across the country. The GPSU has also warned of mass industrial unrest if necessary.APNU shadow Minister of Finance, Carl Greenidge,Fabian Delph Manchester City Jersey, also speaking on the five per cent increase, had mentioned that the government is committed to having collective bargaining agreements and having those lead to the wage adjustments that are supposed to follow.However throughout its 21 years of bargaining with unions only on two occasions was any agreement negotiated with government.“This, like the exercise in budgeting for government, is an exercise in window dressing and fooling the public. You cannot be saying that you have discussions that should take place between five or six unions over 21 years and over the 21 years only on two occasions in all of that time you can conclude negotiations.”Public Service Minister Jennifer Westford when contacted last week said that she was unaware that workers were protesting the five percent increase.Westford had told Kaieteur News that she was unaware of any plans to reviewA section of the protest yesterday.the proposed five per cent increase. She added, “This is not how a government operates.”Government, she said, is not going to review the five per cent proposal because of any protests and added that the workers should,Malik McDowell Seahawks Jersey, in fact, be happy with the increase.Josh Rosen UCL

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