Categorized | National News

Progress Made In City Market Ordeal, Gibson

There has been “some progress” in the saga involving former employees of City Market, according to Minister of Labour Shane Gibson.

Mr. Gibson told the Bahama Journal last week that he knows the respective parties have been meeting.

“They met just [last] week and I can tell you there has been progress made,” he said.

“I should be getting an update very soon and hopefully the former workers will as well. There is still [some negotiations] and work to do but we feel that we will have this matter resolved as soon as we can.”

More than 300 former employees of the City Market food store chain are still waiting to hear when they will receive their severance packages from the company.

The employees were laid off earlier this year after Bahamas Supermarkets Limited – the parent company – said the food store chain was not making any profits.

The food store eventually went belly-up and workers were laid off.

“We just want what’s legally owed to us,” the store’s former Inventory Auditor, Whanslaw Turnquest told the Bahama Journal in a telephone interview recently.

“The courts have made some rulings in our favour, but we still have no word on when the severance packages will be given to us. These people worked long and hard for the company and now everyone is in limbo. Bills need to be paid. These people have children and other obligations.”

Mr. Turnquest said the workers just want what is legally owed to them.

“I have bills to pay,” one former employee told the Journal who wished to remain anonymous.

“The government wants to talk about gambling referendum and so many other things and yet people are suffering in this country. I have children. I have a mortgage. The government needs to deal with the real issues like poverty and crime. Right now, all they’re doing is turning their backs on the Bahamian people.”

Last month, Minister Gibson said there has been no formal sale of City Markets, however, an agreement is in place.
Super Value President Rupert Roberts bought two of City Markets stores.

He has already transformed the Cable Beach store into Quality Supermarkets and has plans to do the same for the South Beach location.
The workers are owed about $5 million.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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