Statement by Minister for Public Works on truckers pay controversy


Statement on the Tipper Truckers Association of Dominica Engaged on the Pont Casse to Melville Hall Road Rehabilitation – Lot 2 Project

I feel obliged to shed some light on a matter of much debate over the last few days. The Tipper Truckers Association of Dominica is subcontracted to Emile Gaddarkhan et Fils, the main contractor of the Pont Casse to Melville Hall Road Rehabilitation – Lot 2 Project. I have been so advised that the payment claims for the Tipper Truckers Association and other suppliers are processed by the main contractor and included in the contractor’s own claim which is submitted to the Consultant of the project for certifying and passing on to the funding agency, Agence Française de Développement (AFD) through the Ministry of Public Works, Energy and Ports. The certified claim of the contractor is submitted to the AFD Regional Office in Martinique for payment.

Notwithstanding the fact for the additional works that is currently ongoing under the new financing facility a new payment arrangement was negotiated and a local bank account was set up by the funding agency in order to facilitate the quicker payment of the contactor and subcontractors including the truckers. All the mechanism for the allowing the transfers of the funds from the local bank have been finalized and payments can now made to the contractor and subcontractors (truckers, works providers, suppliers of cement, steel, fuel). I have been advised that the Tipper Truckers Association has been informed of the state of readiness for making of the payment.

Under this new arrangement the contractor’s claim must still be endorsed by the funding agency and the payment made from local bank account. I have been advised that as of this month the sum of US$4.0 M was paid to the local account by the funding agency. I have been further advised that to facilitate the Tipper Truckers Association the Ministry has agreed for the main contractor to endorse their claim and pass on to the consultant for payment in advance of the contractor’s own claim.

It is unfortunate however that operatives of the United Workers Party including elected members were directly involved in making of phone calls to instigate the truckers to take certain civil disobedience actions like the blocking of bridges and obstructing of traffic.

It is hopeful that new measure will lead to a smoother and more efficient system for all parties concerned.

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  1. Anonymous
    August 12, 2013

    I won’t adress you as mr blackmore because you don’t deserve the title. blackmore you are a joke you’re laughable

  2. Tony
    July 29, 2013

    If skerrit wants to make the election about him,the opposition should make it about Blackmore.Gutter politics!

  3. Justice and Peace!
    July 28, 2013

    :oops: :twisted: :mrgreen: :?: Another failed and dragging project which should by now be completed :oops: :twisted: :mrgreen: :?:

  4. How long? Not long
    July 26, 2013

    Is BlackMore that have the power, not the truckers or their families or ordinary Dominicans.

    But it have some truckers who drive for certain “playing-Big” people, as well as the truck owners and they get paid though. No problem. They always fix up in Govt. projects.

    Blackmore cannot see those begging-for-their-money truckers these days. They have no power to do anything. Is Blackmore who have the power. On several occasions he has shown how uncaring he his towards others plight. Remember the arrogance re. Dr. Moise and the breaking down of his place, as regards the Scotshead/Soufriere road works? Power!!!!!

    Remember the disgraceful words on public radio – Put your hands between your legs? Power !!!

    Is so then? Truckers are badly hurt due to 7 months Gwayeh, no payment for work done and Blackmore more vex about they and the public crying foul? Square peg in round hole. Incompetence. How Long? Not long

  5. concern about DA
    July 26, 2013

    skettit, need to get some new candidates. it is time for men like blackmoore to go and sit down somewhere. put him back in the police force, let him go and patrol roseau. he is becoming a nuisance to the labour party.

    enough is enough

  6. July 26, 2013

    there are two things in DA you bend the truth or you lie any tin els you beg lend or borrow how long notlong. 8-O

  7. w
    July 26, 2013

    Blackmoore boy……….u make me laugh…..

    De arrangement was already made……U…representing de government……..could not honour ur part of de arrangement (i suspect dat de local bank arrangements were not finalized)… u had de truckers embarrassing themselves out there……..and u playing ring-a-round-a-rosy with de truth……..when de PM minister of finance tell u dat de local bank arrangement is final u coming out playing ‘SHERRIF COME TO SAVE DE TOWN’………U DONE CUSS OUT DE TRUCKERS ALREADY……UWP DID NOT MAKE A STATEMENT ENCOURAGING TRUCKERS TO CAUSE CIVIL UNREST!!!!!!!!!!!


  8. elbigsexy
    July 26, 2013

    I have finally figured out why these labour ministers feel we are their servants.
    It’s because most of them came into politics and became ministers immediately.
    So here’s the solution; Place their backsides into the opposition to enshrine in their BIG HEADS, that we are their bosses not the other way around.

  9. fair play
    July 26, 2013

    Mr Blackmore this project is under Your dept.You have a responsibility to ensure that ALL participants are paid on time.
    But all you can say is you are hopeful this arrangement will work.
    You should be certain it will work

  10. July 26, 2013

    Looks like DNO did not like my last comment about labor party should have been on top of this just one month after the truckers did not get paid. is that not illegal? you cannot ignore a binding contract. Blackmoore work for your people. If foreigners coming to give you aid and build you roads make sure they pay your people.. That is simple. Getting roads for slave labor not ok?
    Freedom of speech I should not be blocked from giving my opinion. If the statement given by the govt official can blame on party why cant I blame another. Private message me if you have to so I know if this is an open forum. You have my email.

  11. Country Man
    July 26, 2013

    The statement by the minister is very telling. This is the same Agence Française de Développement (AFD) that is expected to provide financial support to the geothermal project. They will follow the same protocol of having a French contractor as the lead on the Geothermal Project in Dominica and the project will drag on forever as this small road project has. Since 2000 AFD have been putting money into geothermal exploration in Dominica but all of the money goes to French consultants. The french are employing the french with the french tax payers dollars to experiment in Dominica. They have not trained one Dominican in geothermal management, development, exploration. When they are done they will tell you all we need is a mere 600 Million Euro to develop Dominica geothermal resource to meet the French energy demand with Dominica paying the bill. Who you think is going to be stuck with most of that bill and all the environmental and social cost

    • Jay
      July 27, 2013

      Hear, hear. These loans are for the benefit of French contractors, of course, Gaddarkhan showing large amongst them, and the poor people of Dominica are pledged to repay this money that mainly ends up in foreign pockets. Who are the smart guys??

  12. beholder
    July 26, 2013

    Truckers are responsible for maintaining their equipment, providing fuel and perhaps even paying loans on the equipment they own. How is a responsible working Dominican expected to make a living if their compensation is withheld for more than six months. They should be protesting after a delay of thirty days.

  13. Lucy
    July 26, 2013

    One word Blackmoore– Nonsense.

  14. Hey Hey
    July 26, 2013

    what happen to mister? he has no feeling for the truckers and their families. Even some of the truckers afraid to speak out playing politics. The minister cupboard full and his stomach full.

  15. Pass by
    July 26, 2013

    mr. minister, everything is uwp fault? what is your fault?

  16. T mama
    July 26, 2013

    BUT Mr Blackmoore.UWP should not come in your letter….the Truckers have a right to stand up for their right and their money…blame blame other persons for your mistakes…TAKE MORE INTEREST IN YOUR DOMINICAN TRUCKERS…..

    • CONFUSED !!
      July 27, 2013

      Mr. Blackmoore where is UWP coming in your statement. Are you not the minister for Pulic Works? It is your responsibility to ensure that everything moves according to plan for instance do you realize that if the truckers don’t work the impact it would have on the project in terms of completion time? Sir I was once LABOR but now I have changed because i realize that you guts slogan is ” GET RICH AND LEAVE THE REST TO DIE,” I am feed up you all NONSENSE!!!! SIR BE A MAN AND ACT LIKE ONE ALSO!!

  17. Election coming.
    July 26, 2013

    All Blackmore is saying is that “he was advised”, “he has been so advised” and “he was further advised”. How much more advice does he need before the truck drivers can get paid? I think it would be better if he had not said anything.

  18. July 26, 2013

    Hello Mr Blackmoore the Truckers are subcontracted by Mr Gaddarkhan but you are the Minister of Public Works. Sir you should make sure they are paid in a timely manner so that the project will be completed in a timely manner. Anyway how can Mr Blackmoore hold three important positions within the Government, Ect, Minister of Public Work, Energy and Ports. Is he being paid three separate salaries and why Can’t he only be the Minister of Public Works and have someone else as the Minister of Energy and someone else as the Minister of Ports. In that way we can create two well paying jobs for two individuals.

  19. Gimitt
    July 26, 2013

    If this is the mentality of the men that is controlling Dominica, we need to change course.
    They are clearly learning on the job, and just trying something to see if it works.
    Time to go DLP, we have given you guys enough time to redeem your selves, but to no avail.

  20. Canefield
    July 26, 2013

    Mr. Blackmore, by passing the bucket or jumping the fence where it is lowest does not solve the problem.
    This is a perfect example of why AID donors do not want to put cash in the hands of politicians.
    Because it never filters down to the common people.
    The money for this project is in Da, just give the workers what they have worked for!!

  21. Channel 1
    July 26, 2013

    :-D :-D :-D :-D ………all you, look dem man blaming the UWP again…. :lol: :lol:

    If the UWP has so much power while in opposition, just imagine the kind of advantages and benefits the country will gain from the powerful UWP when it gets into government.


    Change is a MUST not an option!!

  22. ha-ha
    July 26, 2013

    black moore time for al u to get out of power………

  23. Positive
    July 26, 2013

    Ok Mr. Blackmore. How more disrespectful can you be to these truckers who have not been paid for more than 7 mths? I would turn this page around and not pay you for at least 3mths – and that means no kick backs, no income at all from any illegal source. Would you be able to live. Sorry you may have a grant savings somewhere. But these men may have depleted their savings account to service their debts and living expenses. Stop blaming the UWP for everything – it is shameful that you cannot admit that you are wrong and have been disrespecting these hardworking men for too long.

    So Mr. Blackmore, who is it the UWP who is inciting the people of Portsmouth along with Ian Douglas to get the land which was promised to them.

    Check yourself before you wreck yourself Mr. Blackmore. Power is not forever.

  24. Hmmmmm
    July 26, 2013

    Blackmore I was reading your statement and was like ok so something happening. Then i came to the end and you blaming workers? for what? Stuepse!!! People in the country too passive. let them try that nonsense in Guadeloupe or Martinique and see how fast the country shutting down. Not just truckers. It is called a sympathetic strike. We just not united in DA and let politricksions fool us for our vote. I waiting for you next election Blackmore. Not again. Pah La! Not my vote you getting this time.

  25. Big Teeth
    July 26, 2013

    Dear B,

    Keep the money for the campaign. Don’t waste the scarce money with these useless folks. All they want is a problem.

    Take care B!

    • no wes pay e may
      July 26, 2013

      @B – u must be a heartless person and anti-human to be thinking that way. u rather ppl stay months without money and the money to be given to people like u to “form the fool”. never sit down, stand up always, because if u sit, u will crush your brain. i think ur head is empty.

  26. WHAT
    July 26, 2013

    i feel obliged to shed some light on a matter,,,,this is how you start you conversation,you are an elected member of goverment yet you feel obliged,,dont you know it is your duty to inform us,how would you feel if we did not pay you for several months,all i get from this goverment is attitude and contentment for dominicans,your a public servant not the master always remember that :-x

  27. Jail-corrupt-leaders
    July 26, 2013

    One minister I would love to see in opposition is Raymond Blackmore, cannot speak, uncaring and opened a newspaper in my face at a meeting. Time people like Blackmore get back to earth u are a minister to serve the people not walk over them, who u think u are? Election coming soon partner! :-|

  28. Just Reading
    July 26, 2013

    If you were not paid fpr 7 month, Mr. Blackmore, knowing your personality, you would behave like one of the UWP operative and do more than call for protest action…I mean, put politicking aside and have a heart…the men, claimed they had not been paid for & more, you never discounted their claim, but you there passing blame…This story has been going on for some time, why it is only this week, we are hearing of a solution and about the money being in the all the time, no one could tell the truckers so and put the story to rest…who you think your hogwash is fooling…I’m reading objectively

  29. john bess
    July 26, 2013

    shut up and pay up uwp is not to be blamed,change is a must not an option !

  30. Top cop
    July 26, 2013

    Any way Rayburn all u will come and. Beg people for votes come next election but I am waiting toooooo manyyyyyy empty promises

  31. Doc. Love
    July 26, 2013

    The New United Workers Party operatives are made up of Dominicans whose friends and families are members of the Truckers Association, therefore they must talk and do all what is necessary to prevent their stomachs from rumbling, due to your inconpetence.

  32. voir dire
    July 26, 2013

    Boss i listened to mr on the dbs interview this morning and what he said and what he did not say are the same…stupesss!!!!!

  33. Just Me
    July 26, 2013

    Incompetence is rampant in Government, but worst in Public Works. What’s the point of blaming the UWP? Are they responsible for your incompetence?

  34. Faceup
    July 26, 2013

    Man stop trying to scam people with your dumb explanations. Stop it..

  35. Shameless
    July 26, 2013

    :lol: :lol: All the statement is talking about is that you “have been advised”… :lol: :lol: :lol: . Soon you will also launch an investigation to see which UWP persons that are pushing the truckers.

    Mr. Blackmore you are missing the point! I

    ts seven months and the truckers have not been paid while you sir are getting your $5000.00 plus on time, every time. Instead of apologizing you come here making BS excuses about “you have been advised” and blaming your political rival for instigating the issue. The nerve of you and this administration! You are fortunate if its only the UWP pushing the truckers to be more aggressive in their actions.

    I sincerely hope that you “have also been advised” that the DLP will soon be a non entity when it comes to the governance of this country. Your statement is pathetic and lack basic understanding of the truckers plight. Get off your high horse and listen to the people before opening your boca .

    “Change MUST Come”
    Assertive, NOT Agressive!

  36. Nkrumah Kwame
    July 26, 2013

    Stop making yourself an , sir!! Where is the evidence that UWP is “instigating” the truckers? By the way it has been reported that you said that Lot 2 of the Canefield to Melville Hall road will be completed by December 31 this year, is it in the same mould as when you gave two dates last year (June 30 and December 31, 2012)? You really sicken me as you have sherked your responsibility as Minister of works. I still wish you, though, all the very best in the future!!

  37. maindesk
    July 26, 2013

    The fact that the minister took all of 7 months to come to explain what is going on shows utter contempt for the truckers and the people of Dominica. To come now blaming the UWP is an old election ploy that is fast becoming boring, and stupid. indeed it is the threat of action by the truckers that forced him to come down from his high horse.

  38. Lougaoo Mem
    July 26, 2013

    All excuses are irrelevant when seven months go by and not a penny been paid for work done. Certainly, the banks will not buy those excuses when the mortgage notes are due. Nowhere else in the Caribbean this nonsense would be accepted.
    Thank You!

  39. blah blah blah
    July 26, 2013

    whatever the issue, however you solve it… just get the people paid and put this Melville hall road fiasco to rest!!! ENOUGH STATMENTS..MORE ACTION!!!!

  40. natiwel
    July 26, 2013

    A little timely explanation always help.

  41. Mahaut
    July 26, 2013

    Raburn, you have a bad job a Public works minister, its not that your colleauges have done any better , but, why are you still here when all the projects under your control have failed ?
    I hope you are looking for a new job, becasue we won’t be voting for you next election.
    And again Ministers should be residing in their constituincy

  42. watt la
    July 26, 2013

    Blackmoore said a new payment arrangement and a local bank was set up for additional work that is currently ongoing. Sir, we elected you all to take decision on our behalf and you failed to establish a local bank to facilitate the funding of your project in the first arrangement? I stand in solidarity with Ian Douglas and the people of Portsmouth over the land dispute. I want to do the same with you if you support the plight of the truckers.

  43. african queen
    July 26, 2013

    Blackmoore(plus noir) you all would do the same. This is politics you do the same, Don’t you?

  44. Nacinimod
    July 26, 2013

    This explanation is as clear as mud. Will someone please translate into Dominica English?

  45. police
    July 26, 2013

    i hope they license their trucks when they get paid

  46. disturb
    July 26, 2013

    what have you said that the truckers has not said. you need to come from you high horse and deal with reality as it is. UWP operatives? do you expect that all truckers will be LABOUR. wouldn’t it be reasonable expected to demonstrate for their money?
    all of a sudden you now know and have been ADVICE autter rubish

  47. Conscious
    July 26, 2013

    When I hear of adult. Being disobedient when they are seeking payment for hard work. I find these people in position are ridiculous. They are adults and should always be treated as adults. When a man work there should be no need to BEG for his pay.

  48. Views Expressed
    July 26, 2013

    Blackmore, this is rubbish, leave the UWP out of this and all blame and claims rest solely at your desk and that of the Prime Minister and Finance Minister. You and your office should be monitoring this non payment nonsense from the first month that it did not go that far to seven months…would you have just sit back in government and continue to work for seven months without pay…? I bet a month would not pass without you raising your voice. Accept responsibility stop passing the buck and do your work, and not this stupid cheap politics…who you feel you fooling. You and your government are inept, engage in cheap politics, fooling the people and the country is getting poorer and poorer.

  49. A Voice
    July 26, 2013

    What that is unfortunate is that you guys seat there and haven’t paid the truckers for seven months. All this effort that you are trying to come up with there now should have been undertaken long ago, but it was a case of it is not my business.

    It is also unfortunate that the truckers had to wait for phone calls from UWP to instigate them to take action, if that is true in the first place.

    It seems that it was the threat of civil disobedience action that lit the fire under all you pots. Pay the people man.

  50. mee1
    July 26, 2013

    Why did it take you 3-4 days to shed some light on the matter. oh i know, you had to get some time to see that the money is on the account at our local bank so they can get paid and you will say the money is at the bank and do not know why they are doing this. Well I don’t think anyone will buy that. I wonder if the people involved ever try to put theirselves in the truckers shoes. Those are men with loans, children and bills to pay, how can anyone with a conscience do something like that. I find we let foreign companies come here and do as they wish with us. Last night on news i am hearing a chinese company saying Dominicans must adapt to their culture, man that is the kind of thing that gets to me. You come to our country, you should adapt to our culture. We must stop these things before it gets out of hand, if it’s not there as yet. At the rate things are going, soon their will be no project for any DOMINICAN companies and that’s a real shame. I wonder when will our leaders see their mistake. 108 workers = 100 chinese, 8 Dominicans. that is laughable and sad at the same time. If it’s not the French company taking advantage, it’s the chinese, why did we give up on Dominicans and the hard workers, this is so sad it hurts just thinking and writing this.

  51. Wesleyman
    July 26, 2013

    local bank …sorry

  52. Wesleyman
    July 26, 2013

    So what about the fact hat the truckers claimed they have not been paid for 7 months? Did operatives from the united workers party instruct the contractor not to pay them?
    Nonsense I say Mr. Minister, you need to lead and not lay blame, that’s for week minded people, you need to find out what has happened in a system that was instituted to utilize a local back to speed up payments, if being behind for 7 months in something that is supposed to be sped, if that is acceptable to you then we can start laying blame, if the truckers were told it would take them 7 months to get paid and now they are upset even though they already knew it, then you can lay blame, otherwise man up and be a leader and find out from your contractor, whats going on with this modern day slavery

  53. Marco Chaud
    July 26, 2013

    cheap politics… pass the buck and blame workers

  54. IluvmyPm
    July 26, 2013

    Geez Blackmore the truckers not paid for seven months how can u blame uwp, where is your humanity?

    • Bogoroy
      July 26, 2013

      “It is unfortunate however that operatives of the United Workers Party including elected members were directly involved in making of phone calls to instigate the truckers to take certain civil disobedience actions like the blocking of bridges and obstructing of traffic.”

      The Minister accuses the UWP of politicizing the issue. He doe snot blame the UWP for the non-payment of the truckers. READ!!!!

    • jokes
      July 26, 2013

      where does he blame UWP in the article? Paragraph and line please..?

      • Nac Vibes
        July 26, 2013

        May I suggest in future you read the whole article, below is the exact text as it appears and attributed to the minister who is not fit for purpose.

        It is unfortunate however that operatives of the United Workers Party including elected members were directly involved in making of phone calls to instigate the truckers to take certain civil disobedience actions like the blocking of bridges and obstructing of traffic.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0
      • Not a herd follower
        July 26, 2013

        read the statement. you want somebody to do it for you?

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0
      • Positive
        July 26, 2013

        “It is unfortunate however that operatives of the United Workers Party including elected members were directly involved in making of phone calls to instigate the truckers to take certain civil disobedience actions like the blocking of bridges and obstructing of traffic.”

        Typical Labourite..people have to spell it out, read it, and spell everything for you all. Open your ears and your eyes – or is it blocked with red poisonous venum!!!?

        The Minister has blamed the UWP for the Truckers speaking out.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0
    • Tolie
      July 26, 2013

      These folks have no humanity no conscience.

    • mac
      July 26, 2013

      read the article for several hours till you get it right.

  55. William
    July 26, 2013

    Don’t think what you are saying is true.
    Reasons :- I have been further advice etc
    Since govt is undertaking such project and monies have to be paid to a local bank instead of the TREASURY , Come on Blackmoore.

  56. Truth be told
    July 26, 2013

    Mr Minister with all this explanation of the mechanisms to facilitate payment you still have not said why the truckers have not been paid yet for several months! You have actually said nothing new here. And by the way if the UWP is trying to make political mileage out of this I too will agree with you that this is wrong. You see I am not Labour, I am not UWP and I am not Freedom. I am a highly intelligent and sophisticated civilised Dominican! But you too need to stop playing politics and tell the truckers when they will be paid all the money due to them. When?

  57. Papa Dom
    July 26, 2013

    Boy look joke! Blackmore tell the people why they have not been paid and stop the foolishness about UWP. It is clear to all that the executive of the truckers assn. are all labour supporters, so how does UWP come into the picture?

  58. Smh
    July 26, 2013

    It is even more regretable that Dominica Labor Party would not stand behind their citizens/working people to assure they were paid for their work. Govt should be working for the people.

  59. Rex
    July 26, 2013

    What BS. You have been so advised my foot. This is not the first time that Trckers on this project have had to go public for their money. You told the truckers that you wash your hand now all of a sudden you have talk and now blaming UWP supporters. UWP supporters dd not land on the truckers te Trckers landed on UWP supporters for help.
    What Blackmore is not saying is why it took 7 months for the truckers to get their money. Do these really expect to fool everyone with this crap.

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