Massy must investigate forex spending, but no witch hunt, says union

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Massy Group CEO and president Gervase Warner – File photo

THE Contractors and General Workers Trade Union (CAGWTU) is calling on the Massy Group to investigate reports raised by its general counsel Angelique Parisot-Potter about questionable spending of foreign exchange for an executive management training programme in Florida.

The union also asked why Massy could engage in such expenditure while wage negotiations for its monthly-paid workers remain outstanding.

At Massy’s annual general meeting at the Hilton Trinidad, Port of Spain on Monday, Parisot-Potter expressed concerns about money being spent through the training programme for people to “train people to communicate with the dead, or heal with ‘white light’.”

Parisot-Potter has submitted a 13-page report outlining her concerns to group CEO and president Gervase Warner. Massy has denied Parisot-Potter’s claims even as it sent her on administrative leave pending a disciplinary investigation of her conduct, including disclosing confidential matters. It said it had been looking into the report she submitted.

In a statement on Friday, CAGWTU general secretary Akeba Wilson said, “The union is calling on Massy Group to address this stigma which has made our members at Massy Stores the laughingstock of the nation by the various social media postings poking fun at them and Massy Stores.”

Wilson added that Massy also has a responsibility to “show a duty of care by focusing on and prioritising the workers who have helped the company make huge profits over the years.”

He said there must be no witch hunt in this matter.

“An investigation must be conducted into how the Massy Group prioritises questionable arbitrary spending over the workers they call ‘family’.”

Wilson reminded the group that its workers are the ones responsible for the profits that it makes.

“The union notes that in its financial year ending September 30, 2023, Massy’s revenue increased by 15 per cent to $14.19 billion, and its profit before tax was up by 23 per cent at $1.22 billion.”

Against this background, Wilson said CAGWTU is very concerned that “Massy has sent home single mothers and refused to settle negotiations with its workers at Massy Stores even as they are referred to as ‘family’.”

In September, Massy retrenched nine female front-end supervisors from different branches.