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TWO TRIBUTES TO HORACE SCOTT (May 7th 1933 - October 13th 2017)

posted 16 Oct 2017, 20:51 by Gerry Kangalee   [ updated 16 Oct 2017, 20:52 ]
INDEPENDENT, UNCOMPROMISING, REFUSED TO SERVE UNDER MCLEOD!
MILITANT FEISTY, DEDICATED
by Sylvan Wilson

Horace Scott was very militant, feisty and dedicated
comrade to the OWTU and the working-class. He served the union as activist, branch officer and executive officer.

Comrade Scott was also a very emotional person who would at times move from tears to cuss in his presentation. He was a crafty and skilled negotiator and one of the early trade unionists to grapple with the complexities of pension plan operations and benefit structure. He encouraged many younger comrades to get involved.

Comrade Scott loved the OWTU and spoke his mind openly. He disagreed with the legendary George Weekes at times. However, the maturity and self confidence that most of those comrades possessed at that time allowed Weekes to bring Horace unto his Executive and elevated him to the position of Assistant General Secretary of the union. Horace named one of his sons George.

Horace also had a “business-head” and worked tirelessly to have the union monetize some of its fixed assets. He worked with the Rental Committee to turn the union’s Palms Club into the mecca of entertainment in San Fernando at that time and a number of other union properties returned considerable income from rentals.

Comrade Scott is one of the unsung heroes of the OWTU. He was one of the servants of the working class who toiled to build the OWTU into one of the premier and well respected institutions of the country for very little personal benefit.

Rest in peace!!!!! Thou true and faithful soldier!

by Cecil Paul

Horace Scott was already a General Council member when I came in as an officer of NP Branch in the middle 70's. He was very impressive with a powerful voice and non-compromising positions when it came to workers’ rights being violated by the then Texaco Oil Company.

He was a Branch President from Texaco Barrackpore. Whispers around the General Council were that he fought against George Weekes and the Rebels movement of the OWTU and still survived as a leader of 
his branch.

So most of us newbies to the General Council looked up to him and listened attentively to his contributions which on many occasions, when necessary, criticized the head table for positions he thought incorrect and not in the best interest of workers.

When Lionel Bannister, the then General Secretary, retired in the early 1980's and the then Assistant Secretary Doodnath Maharaj was nominated to be General Secretary and refused to work with the proposed Assistant General Secretary, Horace Scott was persuaded to take the nomination and became Assistant General Secretary until George Weekes retirement in 1987.

At a function to honour Weekes at Farrel House Hotel in Claxton Bay organized by his successor Errol McLeod, Horace Scott complained bitterly to me that none of the other Executives of the OWTU were given seats at the head table (I don't remember if Doodnath Maharaj was given a seat) but instead they were filled with NAR politicians and big time lawyers with the Chairman being former 1st. Vice President Errol McLeod now Acting President General of the OWTU. Horace saw this action as disrespect for Weekes’ colleagues of many years. He remarked that it was staged as a political farewell and not a Union function as even reserved seats in the audience were not available to OWTU Executive Officers.

When the term of the current Executive ended and the Rebels were nominating Executives to contest the first elections under Errol McLeod, the nominee for President, Horace Scott told me he would never serve under McLeod after his treatment of the Executive at Weekes' farewell function. He seemed to have known something most of us did not anticipate at the time.

Horace Scott was a traditional militant working class man. He not only spoke like a worker he acted as one in a non compromising Butlerite manner. While he was militant he employed good strategy. I remember he refused to have workers names on vouchers for subsistence on strike camps when others wanted to know the workers who received food and travel allowances and agreed with some of us who did not want to disclose the names of those in the strike camps.

He was one of the few Executives who opposed the Metal Box and CPI strikes as the votes to strike did not exceed sixty percent of the workers and disagreed with the President General’s lunch time vote with a minority of workers attending the meeting. Both strikes were disasters for workers.

Horace Scott made a valuable contribution to workers in the country particularly those in the OWTU.
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