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Picardo lashes back at GSD over ‘populism’ claims

Unite demo against Interserve job cuts 15-05-2018 (Photo John Bugeja) demonstrating outside Naval Base and a sit down protest outside the Convent with CM participation

The Chief Minister has hit back at the GSD over its statement on his support for the Unite the Union protest against compulsory redundancies in Interserve.

The GSD had accused Fabian Picardo of populism for supporting the Interserve workers, contrasting that with the recent labour unrest at the GHA.

But Mr Picardo said the GSD misunderstood the relationship between the Gibraltar Government and Unite.

“I can see that the GSD is increasingly embarrassed by the in's and out's of its political demise and is trying to hide behind manufactured issues,” he said.

“They misunderstand the nature of the excellent relationship between the Government I lead and Unite.”

“We agree on many, many things. We disagree on a few.”

“We also have issues between us about whether things which we have agreed have been properly implemented.”

“But one thing is clear, when Unite members are threatened with compulsory redundancies, I am there to support them.”

He added: “We have done so in the private sector, in particular in Banking. We have also done so when the MoD itself was progressing redundancies without ruling out compulsory redundancies. Now we are doing so in respect of Interserve.”

“That's not populism, that's solidarity and I am proud to have attended to the members and officers of Unite who called me down to Convent Place in their symbolic protest.”

“Populism is the GSD's Feetham and Clinton scurrying down to try to ride the band wagon of the GHA walkout and having to scurry away quicker than they arrived with their political tails between their legs when -instead of people calling for them -the Unite members present called for them to stop trying to politicise Union issues for their own partisan ends.”

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