NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The Bahamas Utilities Service and Allied Workers Union (BUSAWU) intends to file for a court injunction against Director of Labour John Pinder over the delayed certification of its union election held last month.
In a letter to members, BUSAWU President Dwayne Woods said the executive team will file an injunction against John Pinder relating to the most recent election certification.
The election took place on June 30.
“This injunction will indeed stop him from being able to recall the election unlawfully,” he said.
“We will be seeking a court date with the next two days.
“This one can be considered a slam dunk.
“We will also be seeking a judicial review on the same to have the director certify the recent polls.
“Failure on his behalf to certify will automatically give the present officers a three-year term in office constitutionally.”
Woods and his ‘Independent Coalition Team’ have not been certified as the elected winners of the past union election.
He said the delay remains a mystery.
“Despite all the noise in the market and the recent election results as dated June 30, 2020, the union would like to refer to a letter by director John Pinder dated July 13, 2020, in which two reasons were given for the attempted recall of the polls.
“The union contends that the reason given are frivolous and vexatious”.
Woods continued: “It is now evident that the powers that be are attempting to disenfranchise the union of three years of union governance by not certifying the union’s electoral poll.”
The union president called for the minister of labour to intervene.
In a July 13 letter, Pinder advised the union the election was facilitated and the results were tallied.
However, on the morning of the election, the designated officer at the department’s office in Exuma notified him that he had not received any of the unions ballots.
Pinder said it was discovered the ballots were sent to the administrator’s office in Exuma and the local island administrator supervised the Exuma poll without the authority to do so.
He said he received numerous calls from designated officers on New Providence and the Family Islands who expressed concerns about the integrity of the polls.
In his letter, the director said another ballot would be taken under his supervision.
When contacted today, Pinder said he is guided by the Industrial Relations Act and the department has to be satisfied that the election was “fair and everyone had an opportunity to participate”.
Asked about a new ballot undertaking, Pinder said July 31 was set as the new date.
“They have a right to do their injunction and do what they have to do and we will do what we have to do,” the director said.
According to results made available by BUSAWU, Woods and his team won the election by a landslide.
Attorney Wayne Munroe, QC, represents the union.