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Konrote Warns Bogus Recruiters

Konrote Warns Bogus Recruiters
Gilbert Massi (lt) and Michel Ulas from Vanuatu picking apples at Vernview, Victoria.
December 03
10:46 2014

Government has warned bogus operators trying to recruit Fijians for New Zealand seasonal work that they will be tracked down.

Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations, Jioji Konusi Konrote, said yesterday he had received reports on the matter and had alerted the police.

“The police are now tracking down these bogus recruiters.”

Mr Konrote said he believed these bogus recruiters had also been collecting money.

“My advice to these bogus recruiters is that we will track you down.”

He said it was sad that some had taken advantage of the seasonal workers scheme. They set up their bogus recruitment companies and had made false promises, he said.

The Fiji Police Force’s chief operations officer, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP) Rusiate Tudravu confirmed they had received reports on bogus recruiters.

“From the reports we’re getting many of these bogus agents are claiming to be helping out in getting easy passports and purchasing

new cars at a lower rate, etc,” ACP Tudravu said.

He said members of the public should demand to see the recruiters’ identification cards or a letter from the minister.

He said they would investigate these agents.

Mr Konrote said his ministry was trying to complete all the arrangements to send off the first 30 workers to NZ as a pilot project early in the New Year and recruitment had not started.

“We are still working on the final details before we advertise it.”

The minister reminded the public that the recruitment would be done by the ministry’s Foreign Affairs Department.

He said they were looking only at a limited number of young and dedicated applicants.

All appications would be screened thoroughly and selection would be fair and transparent.

The successful applicants, he said, would be trained before leaving the country.

Meanwhile, the New Zealand High Commissioner to Fiji, Mark Ramsden, said the Regional Seasonal Employment Scheme (RSES) would be a business to business scheme.

This means it would be between the recruiting agency in Fiji and the employer in New Zealand.

Mr Ramsden said it would be an exciting time for Fiji with its re-entry into the seasonal employment scheme.

“This, I know has a huge interest in Fiji, and is something that is really strong between New Zealand and the region as it is a very popular scheme,” he said.

“On December 11, the chief executive officer of New Zealand immigration and his counter-part in Fiji would be signing an agreement that that sets out the technical details and the undertaking of the scheme.”

Mr Ramsden said the first phase would be very exciting.

“The first phase which is the pilot phase to take place next year where 30 Fijians would go down to New Zealand to be the first to work under the seasonal employment scheme.

“RSES is the business to business scheme with the New Zealand’s private sector working with people organising and sending labour from Fiji,” he said.

“What the NZ government does is set the overall conditions, make sure that workers are well treated and looked after fairly and provides them literacy and numeracy training for the workers that go down.”

He said RSES was for workers all around the world and the great majority came from the Pacific Region countries which gave some room for Fijian workers to enter as well.

The workers would be contracted based on the employer’s recruitment criteria and the recruitment would be done on the scene.



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