Categorized | National News

BUT President says VAT Holiday Began Too Late

BUT President Belinda Wilson

Journal Staff Writer

The Department of Inland Revenue has announced this year’s back to school VAT holiday
commenced August 19 and continues until September 10. Following this announcement, there
were some complaints that the VAT holiday started too late after some schools have already
opened and teachers may have to buy items out of their own pocket.
Bahamas Union of Teachers President Belinda Wilson said she shares those same sentiments.
“School is opening for teachers August the 21 st , she told reporters. Payday is August the 29th. It’s
opening for the students on August the 28th. So, parents who depending on this August salary to
prepare their students for school, will not have access to those funds.
“I’m telling you, I know that the numbers will be low because the parents are depending on that
pay in order for them to prepare their students.
“There was a teacher’s morale survey that the Ministry of Education sent out several months ago.
I serve on that teacher morale committee. They had a press conference some months ago. So, in
our committee it was agreed and the government has approved a $250 allowance for teacher
“Well, school opens next Monday. The teachers don’t have the first dollar in their pockets.
“So, if you are preparing for school, then I think the logical thinker would know that you would
need the monies in your hands at least by July payday.”
She said she had a conversation with the acting director of education and has hopes that teachers
will get those much-needed monies in short order.
The BUT president also clapped back at Minister of Education Glenys Hanna Martin after she
said she believed the VAT holiday is set at the right time.
“Well, obviously, if the minister said that was enough time, she does not have children in school,
she said.
“Furthermore, she’s not poor like the people in her constituency who are depending on the little
check to prepare their children.
“So tell her to rewind, go in her constituency, do a survey, and she will see that the majority of
the parents in the Englerston constituency are awaiting the few dollars to buy their children
uniforms and watch how the parents are going to flock to the various constituencies when they

are doing the back to school giveaways or the other entities are going to do the back to school
“So, tell her get to reality.”
Wilson said she is also in discussions about pushing back the 2024 school year opening dates.
“You’re not prepared. You’re not prepared”, she said repeatedly. “And what they keep doing, too,
is they keep chipping at the teacher’s time off. You want teachers to work all year round. They’re
also doing summer school, and then you’re going to open school.
“You’re going to have burnt out teachers and if we burnt out, we cannot give you our best. Yes,
there is a policy about contact days with students for the students. But if you open school early
and the parents cannot purchase the uniforms, the lunch, and the books for the students, then
they’re not coming to school anyway until the following week. So let common sense prevail and
She asserted that she will continue to fight for teachers, students and parents across the country
until issues are resolved.
Items including personal computers and electronics, school supplies, hair accessories, hand
sanitizers, clothing, footwear, bags and other related items will be sold at a zero-vat rate during
the VAT holiday.

Written by Jones Bahamas

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Watch JCN Channel 14 Shows

Jcn Channel 14

Sign in now to see your channels and recommendations!

Join Us on Facebook