SANDALS Royal Bahamian has “good prospects” for succeeding with an appeal over a Judicial Review action that seeks to eliminate the trade union responsible for the recent strike vote against it.
The Court of Appeal’s encouraging words for the resort were contained in yesterday’s judgment, which granted it extra time in which to appeal a previous decision by the Chief Justice, Sir Michael Barnett, to throw out the Judicial Review action.
That action, which challenges the “very basis” for the Bahamas Hotel, Maintenance and Allied Workers Union’s (BHMAWU) existence, is seeking a court order that will force the Registrar of Trade Union’s to cancel its registration.
Sandals Royal Bahamian’s case is that the BHMAWU has breached the Industrial Relations Act on two counts – failing to hold nominations for its executive positions, and the non-publication of its annual returns.
And it is alleging that the Registrar of Trade Unions (the director of labour), despite discovering these irregularities himself and giving the BHMAWU two months to correct the problems, has failed to take action over the union’s continued non-compliance.
The other thrust of Sandals Royal Bahamian’s action is that the union’s executives were not elected in accordance with the BHMAWU’s constitution. It is, therefore, seeking a Supreme Court declaration that they have no authority to act on its behalf.
The Judicial Review action thus explains why Sandals Royal Bahamian is refusing to negotiate an industrial agreement with the trade union, an issue that is at the heart of the BHMAWU’s complaints.
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