President David Granger speaking on the recent recording of the Public Interest sought to justify the salary increases his administration is offering to public servants.
“We must admit that when we went into office in May last year, we did not quite anticipate the volume of indebtedness or the size of indebtedness of the Guyana Sugar Corporation, we’ve been bailing out the Guyana Sugar Corporation about 10 billion per year,” Granger said.
The Head of State pointed to a fall in commodity prices, citing bauxite, timber and gold among others, which has affected revenue flows.
He noted that Government was also unable to find sufficient funding for social agencies such as the University of Guyana and Health Services, noting that the Social Sector has taken a lot of the available funds.
” I am not saying that the public servants do not deserve more but we did everything that was possible, we entered into negotiations in good faith, we haven’t discontinued negotiations but that is the final offer we put on the table because we have to prepare next year’s budget , we have to tidy up this business before the last quarter,” the President noted.
The President is encouraging the Guyana Public Service Union to remain engaged with the Government’s negotiators since there will be other elements to be discussed as put forward by the Union.
While Granger stressed that this is the final offer at this time, he emphasized the need for the talks to continue to ensure a satisfactory outcome for both parties in 2017.