President of the Public Service Union, Gerald Henry admits that Jumoke Castro could have sued the Union if they had not represented him during his Facebook scandal. Castro had reportedly failed to give a formal report and explanation to his superiors for his vile comments made on social media towards Shasta Wade. Financial Secretary, Joseph Waight from the Ministry of Finance was called out on the decision to place Castro on administrative leave putting his job on the line. Today, in an interview with Henry he stated that Castro’s actions were not contrary to the disciplinary code.
Gerald Henry, President, Public Service Union:“What happened is that the union by its nature all unions must do this and one of the key components of the union is to have representation for its members but at the same time we don’t condone the wrongs that our members do. So that’s why it looks conflicting but it truly is not because we are not condoning his actions, that was the first thing that went out and then the second thing that went out was that there must be due process at all times and that is where the representation part comes in. It’s unfortunate that the letter got leaked and it’s shows that things aren’t the way they’re supposed to be because someone obviously wanted to make mischief but again the union remains strong in it’s position that there must be due process. In fact if we had not taken that position in terms of representing brother Castro then he could have sued the union and so that is key that people have to understand that the union must represent it’s membership by law and so it’s a legal position that the union had to take but at the same time like I said we don’t condone it and if the legal process in terms of the administrative process proves that he will be disciplined in whatever way then we are okay with that, it’s just that it must be done fairly. Of Course similar to the public people who don’t understand that it is a legal obligation of the union to represent it’s member they will feel, especially the females they will feel as if though they have been slighted and the union is taking the brother’s side because of his political affiliation but certainly that is not the case and most people in the union realize that that is not the case and that we must represent regardless of what and that’s just the position that we find ourselves in. So there has been some backlash from it but it has been minimal. It’s sad because this is one of the reasons why we had to take the position in terms of the content of the letter that the IRO wrote because of the fact that that particular offense is not covered within the regulations and so it’s hard for anyone to take disciplinary actions against something that is not in the disciplinary code and so we want to ensure that that doesn’t happen again and hence the reason why you notice immediately we reached out and asked for us to engage with them to fix that problem.”
Today, Castro is back at work, but his remarks and threats were frowned upon my multiple agencies and parliamentarians including the Prime Minister, Dean Barrow.