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Mc Leod retires with $4.5M

By CECILY ASSON Thursday, June 26 2008

click on pic to zoom in
Retired OWTU president general Errol Mc Leod...
Retired OWTU president general Errol Mc Leod...

RETIRED Oilfield Workers Trade Union (OWTU) president general Errol Mc Leod is to receive a retirement package worth $4.5 million for his 21 years of service to one of the country’s richest trade unions.

An OWTU source told Newsday yesterday that the contents of the separation package include a house to be built at a cost of $2 million on a piece of land owned by Mc Leod in Aripero, a new X5 BMW SUV worth $750,000, guaranteed car insurance for the next five years plus a $1.5 million annuity.

According to reports, the OWTU general council approved Mc Leod’s retirement package during a meeting at the union’s headquarters at Paramount Building, Circular Road, San Fernando. The meeting was chaired by Mc Leod.

Mc Leod was celebrated last night by members of the union at a ceremony at the Palms Club, San Fernando.

When contacted for comment, Mc Leod said: “I don’t know what my separation package is worth and even if I knew I wouldn’t disclose.”

When given a breakdown of the package, Mc Leod said: “I never knew I was valued so highly by the union.”

McLeod worked as a refinery operator at State-owned oil company Petrotrin and became the union’s second vice president, labour relations in 1975 before rising to the position of president general. He retired from Petrotrin about three years.

OWTU sources said the May 31general council meeting was attended by an estimated 35 delegates. Four of them abstained from the vote on the package for Mc Leod and one voted against the multi-million dollar payout. Sources said the delegates voted in favour of the package without discussing the proposal with their respective branches.

Some delegates felt it was exorbitant compared to the retirement package for his late predecessor George Weekes.

“A committee was formed and we all went back to our branch unions where we discussed the matter. Weekes had to give up the deed for a piece of land he inherited in Petit Bourg. The union took that money to help purchase the house in Cocoyea, San Fernando that was given to him. His package was never exorbitant like this,” said a source.

Mc Leod had announced that he was giving up his position as the leader of the union at the OWTU’s annual general meeting last July and was passing the baton over to first vice president Ancel Roget.

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