Guyana needs equal opportunity laws

first_imgDear Editor,The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) notes the announcement on Thursday, April 18 by Exxon Mobil of another find, marking the thirteenth on the Stabroek Block.This find will add to the already expected more than five billion barrels to be produced, yet Guyanese workers have no clear understanding or guideline on how they are expected to foremost benefit from these resources that belong to them.Outside of announcements as to profit sharing between Government and the oil companies and sweeping statements, the revenue would be directed towards improving social services on which citizens/workers have nothing concrete to hold on to.GTUC is on record calling for the Government-prepared Local Content Policy to be reviewed by stakeholders with the aim of having same become more inclusive and finally put into law.In our March 5 publicly announced nineteen-point proposal, outlining a menu of measures to forge the constitutional political system of inclusionary democracy, we called for this. Letters of our desire were dispatched to President David Granger and Leader of the Opposition Bharrat Jagdeo.To date, neither Government nor Opposition has made any move to activate this crucial and important aspect of our development that would assure local labour and businesses that they stand to gain and be protected.Evidently, the politicians see the next General and Regional Elections as the mother of all elections, primarily because oil and gas are expected to flow come 2020.The workers of this country have various political association, a basic right that must be respected, but what they are wary of is that the enjoyment of said right could present a climate where they could be excluded from/discriminated against selling their labour, actively participating and benefitting from the sector.Already, there are allegations of discriminatory practices in preference of one group over the other by local contractors involved in the sector. Similar charges are made about the public and Private Sectors.To take the allegations lightly in a racially fractured and polarised society is to prepare to see the intensifying of tension and clashes amongst groups. This country needs equal opportunity laws as a matter of principle and urgency.People are already staking claims that they stand a chance to benefit. Where expectations are not met, disgruntlement and its attendant fallouts will follow. Now is the time for a national plan, the facilitating of diverse views on how Guyanese can benefit and must be allowed to participate.GTUC reiterates concern that citizens are being made to feel like the national focus is singularly on elections and nothing can happen until after.External forces and internal threatsIn the meantime, the sabre rattling between the superpowers – the United States of America and Russia – over Venezuela is escalating.Where Venezuela has already signalled non-participation in Guyana’s approach to the International Court of Justice to seek a peaceful resolution to the border controversy and has been in alliance with Russian to funnel its oil sales, thus evading US sanctions, we cannot sit easy. Particularly so since the US now has a direct and vested interest in exploiting our oil and gas resources.What is currently evolving in Venezuela, unless we have our defence and protective mechanism in place, can have a deleterious impact in Guyana and amongst Guyanese.Further, the world is replete with evidence where superpowers have sown seeds of discord, undermined Governments and invaded countries in the name of democracy to commandeer their oil and gas resources.Guyanese must be good stewards of history not only in recording and recounting, but also putting systems in place to avoid similar pitfalls.We have to stand as one in the face of our finds and external happenings and not allow ourselves to be the pawns of any in their quest for dominance and proving their might.GTUC reiterates the importance of this nation achieving a unity of purpose and commitment through the establishment of inclusionary Local Content and attendant laws.This nation, as a matter of urgency, must proceed judiciously in addressing matters that are bound to impact our sovereignty, peace and stability, be it internal and/or external.Sincerely,Guyana Trades UnionCongress (GTUC)last_img read more

Posting wider loss, TiVo still beats expectations

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2The Alviso-based company said it added 91,000 TiVo-owned subscriptions in the quarter, compared to 104,000 last year. In addition, TiVo said it netted for the quarter about 2,000 new subscribers through DirecTV customers using TiVo-based products. In all, the gains brought the company’s total number of subscribers as of the end of the quarter to more than 4.4 million, a 33 percent increase from the total a year ago. In its current quarter, TiVo said it expects to lose $12 million to $15 million on revenue of $50 million to $53 million. Analysts were projecting on average a loss of 8 cents a share on revenue of $52.2 million. TiVo shares fell 23 cents, or 3 percent, to close at $7.14 Wednesday on the Nasdaq. They gained a penny in late-session trading after the income report was released. SAN JOSE – TiVo Inc., a provider of digital video recorders, posted a wider first-quarter loss on Wednesday, citing legal costs, aggressive pricing and stock option expenses. In the three months ending April 30, the DVR pioneer said it lost $10.7 million, or 13 cents per share, compared to a loss of $857,000, or 1 cent per share, in the year-ago period. Revenue rose 38 percent to $55.1 million from $40 million a year ago. Analysts, on average, were expecting a loss of 19 cents per share on sales of $50.6 million, according to a poll by Thomson Financial. While “our results are tracking nicely against our internal plans, we fully recognize that there’s still a lot of work to do to overcome some of our marketplace challenges,” TiVo CEO Tom Rogers said in a conference call with analysts. TiVo is battling increasing competition from rival DVR offerings from cable and satellite TV providers. It also is in the midst of a patent battle with EchoStar Communications Corp. That legal wrangling flared up this week as TiVo filed an injunction seeking to ban EchoStar from making or selling its digital video recorder product. TiVo’s request, which also included a recall of EchoStar’s DVR products, follows a jury verdict that found EchoStar willfully infringed on TiVo’s key “time-warp” DVR patent and awarded TiVo $74 million in damages. TiVo officials said Wednesday in its conference call with analysts that it planned to file court documents today seeking additional damages as well as the injunction. U.S. District Judge David Folsom, who also presided over the jury trial in Texas, will hold a hearing on the matters beginning June 26. Meanwhile, TiVo and EchoStar also issued dueling statements Wednesday in reaction to a preliminary rejection by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office of some of TiVo’s patent claims. EchoStar said the patent office decision, made Tuesday, will bolster its case against TiVo, while TiVo portrayed it as insignificant. TiVo said the patent office had re-examined 61 claims and was “pleased” the office confirmed the validity of most of them, including two that the jury found EchoStar had infringed. Some patent claims were rejected but “this should in no way impact the jury verdict,” the company said. EchoStar, a satellite TV company based in Englewood, Colo., also said it was “pleased” with the patent office’s re-examination and that the decision, together with a favorable decision from the Court of Appeals earlier this month, “are steps in the right direction as we prepare our response to TiVo’s recently filed injunction motion.”160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more