Saturday, April 13, 2024

Another immigration hiccup

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The relocation of immigration officers from their condemned building on Wharf Road, The City, has hit a snag, missing the April 3 deadline.

But their representative, the National Union of Public Workers (NUPW), has not complained as it wants the issue in the new headquarters in the retrofitted Barbados Tourism Investment Inc. car park complex on nearby Princess Alice Highway fixed before the workers move in.

According to NUPW general secretary Roslyn Smith, dust got into the air-conditioning ducts during last-minute work to ready the building. The union felt it was better to have this issue rectified thoroughly before moving the long-suffering officers into the building before that remedial cleaning was completed. That way, she added, it would save the officers from possibly having to contend with another potential environmental issue.

As a result of this delay, Smith said she expected the new offices would be ready by mid-May.

She said the union would shortly be meeting with Chief Immigration Officer Wayne Marshall and their shop stewards on the actual transition date.

It would see the fulfilment of a pledge to move the officers which was first announced in November 2016. Then it was said the department would be moved by June 2017.

However, delays in the renovation work led to protest action, including a two-day work stoppage on January 19 and 20 this year, followed by delays in handing over the keys on March 6 as scheduled, to the present hiccup. (SP)

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