The Jamaica Police Federation has reportedly agreed to accept the latest wage offer under the Government’s compensation review, this despite reports that the virtual voting on the offer was marred by technical glitches.
Approximately 80 per cent of the delegates of the federation voted to accept the compensation review offer during a virtual meeting on the Zoom platform on Thursday.
There were reports in the media that delegates of the federation would be meeting on Sunday to discuss the developments relative to the vote to accept of the offer, and claims that the vote could have been interfered with.
In a message to members on Sunday, Chairman of the federation, Corporal Rohan James, said: “There will be no emergency meeting (on Sunday) with rank-and-file members”.
He apologised for any “inconvenience” caused.
It is not clear if other delegates of the federation will be going ahead with any meeting, despite the subsequent clarification from James.
The federation has not publicly communicated the details of Thursday’s vote.
However, in a leaked message to rank-and-file officers, James said: “Based on the result of the polls conducted, the Central Committee (of the police federation) will formally write to the Ministry of Finance and the Public Service (MOFPS) to inform them of the members’ decision.”
Also in the communique to police officers dated Friday, March 17, James wrote that, “The meeting, which we must admit, had several glitches due to power outages and loss of internet connection, ended minutes after the presentation concluded.”
Following the presentation, members at the meeting were asked to vote online on whether to accept housing in or housing out of basic salary, and whether to accept or reject the latest wage offer from the Government as presented.
At the end of the online vote, 86 per cent of respondents voted to accept the offer as presented, while 14 per cent voted to reject the offer.
On the issue of whether to accept housing in basic salary, 60 per cent of the respondents agreed, while 40 per cent rejected that particular offer.
James assured rank-and-file members of the force that they will be updated on further happenings.
The Government had submitted a revised wage offer to the federation after several previous offers were rejected, with sometimes strong criticisms being levelled at Finance and the Public Service Minister, Dr Nigel Clarke.
Clarke, on numerous occasions, had given a March 31 deadline for public sector workers to receive the new salaries and the retroactive sums.
He said failure to sign off on the wage offer on time, would result in the back payments not being accommodated in the 2023-2024 budget, but being paid in portions over several budget cycles to come.
Meanwhile, it was previously reported that the Police Officers’ Association (POA) had rejected a revised wage offer to its members.
The POA represents gazetted officers of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) from the rank of assistant superintendent to commissioner.
The association, through its Chairman, Senior Superintendent Wayne Cameron, had insisted that it was not concerned about meeting the deadline that was set by the Finance Ministry.