PLP: Overseas ferry hire is ‘disturbing’
Government’s decision to hire a ferry from an overseas company at a cost of $1 million was today branded “disturbing” by the PLP.
Shadow Transport Minister Lawrence Scott described it as “troubling” that the OBA “failed to give [Bermudian companies] first, fair, due consideration”.
His comments followed a Government decision to charter a temporary ferry for commuters travelling between Dockyard and St George’s this summer.
Tourism Minister Shawn Crockwell said two weeks ago that the charter ferry
Millennium would provide substantial savings over the cost of purchasing a new ferry approximately $6 million.
However Mr Scott today claimed that Mr Crockwell’s selection process breached “the spirit, if not the letter”, of the Marine Board Act.
Said a PLP spokesman in a statement issued today: “Mr Scott said that the Minister was waving a 'red flag in the face of organised labour' in apparently violating the Collective Bargaining Agreement Article 22 Section 4 (60-day written notice to the Unions of the Ministry's intentions) when he high-handily contracted this non-Bermudian company, with little or no consideration to the impact his decision would have on Bermudian union members, jobs and local tour operators who were ready and willing to assist in the provision of transportation of passengers to and from the cruise liners.
“The Shadow Minister concluded by observing that the OBA has displayed a disturbing reluctance to answer questions, keep their promises or put Bermudians first, in this matter and the people deserve to know if the OBA is indeed considering themselves above the laws that govern us all.”
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