Statement in Response to Claims Attributed to the UTEB President
5th November 2019
Nassau, THE BAHAMAS – In the November 5th, 2019 edition of The Tribune, under the headline “Now lecturers rebel over government pay offer, 82 CENTS A DAY”, quotes were attributed to the President of the Union of Tertiary Educators of The Bahamas (UTEB), Mr. Daniel Thompson. It was noted that “UTEB is … angered by UB’s lack of urgency to finalise an industrial agreement that expired in 2017.”
Firstly, it should be noted that the University agreed three weeks ago to the date of November 10th, 2019 for signing the Industrial Agreement for 2017-2020. Virtually all terms have been agreed. The one outstanding matter pertains to finances. For clarification, the University, not the Government, presented a financial proposal to the Union in June 2019. UTEB returned with a counter proposal in August 2019, after the University’s 2019-2020 budget was approved by the Board of Trustees. The University presented another proposal in October 2019. Last week, the President of UTEB called the President of UB and indicated that the latest UB proposal was rejected and that he would be bringing back another proposal from the union. The University is still awaiting that proposal from the executives of UTEB.
Secondly, the University appreciates the sense of urgency in signing a new agreement with the union, especially since negotiations for the Industrial Agreement 2020-2025 cannot begin until this agreement has been signed. It was already agreed with the union executives that the new Industrial Agreement 2020-2025 must reflect the functioning of the University as indicated by the provisions of the University of The Bahamas Act, 2016. The new agreement will allow for significant growth and expansion of the University’s academic offerings and provide competitive salary scales to specialized faculty. It will allow for the functioning of the Academic Senate and the Union of Tertiary Educators of The Bahamas to exercise their respective roles in helping to build the University.
Thirdly, the article also referenced salaries, which when viewed in isolation, give an impression that is highly misleading. The particular reference that the University is “bringing in an executive that will cost the University between $200,000 to $300,000” is patently false.
The leadership of the union is asked to please continue moving forward with the University with the same sense of urgency, collaboration, and transparency, as agreed.
Office of University Relations
University of The Bahamas
2nd Floor, Michael H. Eldon Complex
Oakes Field Campus
P.O. Box N-4912
Nassau, The Bahamas
Tel: (242) 302-4355/4354/4365
Chartered on 10th November 2016, University of The Bahamas (UB) is a beacon for national transformation. Approximately 5,000 students are enrolled in the University of The Bahamas system which includes campuses and centres on New Providence, Grand Bahama, San Salvador and Abaco, as well as UB online education. UB’s diverse academic programmes, research engagements, athletics and leadership development experiences equip our students to become global citizens in a dynamic world. For more information, visit www.ub.edu.bs