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MISSING FROM ACTION TODAY : Some Supporters Will Not Be There To Join Striking ATS Workers March

MISSING FROM ACTION TODAY : Some  Supporters Will Not Be  There To Join Striking  ATS Workers March
January 13
11:30 2018

Some supporters will not be there to join striking ATS workers march

Some opposition political leaders will be missing from a workers’ march through Nadi town today.

While they have appealed to their supporters to back the march, they will not be there. The march, organized by the Fiji Trades Union Congress, is in support of the group of striking Air Terminal Services workers in Nadi.

Leaders who won’t be there include:

SODELPA leader Sitiveni Rabuka. He says he will going to his home in Drekeniwai to attend a funeral. He has called on party members to support the march. The party will be represented by election candidate Lynda Tabuya, former leader of the People’s Democratic Party.

National Federation Party leader Biman Prasad. He is in India with parliamentary colleagues Parmod Chand and Prem Singh attending the PIO (People of Indian Origin) Parliamentarian Conference. Mr Prasad said he regretted missing the march. NFP vice-president Faizal Koya is expected to lead the NFP in the march.

Opposition leader Ro Teimumu Kepa. She is in Los Angeles, United States. She encouraged the general public to turn out in numbers in solidarity and support the march by the striking ATS workers.

Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry declined to say whether he would join the march.

“Be there to find out,” he said.

Assistant general secretary Aman Ravindra-Singh said he could not confirm whether Mr Chaudhry would attend.

It is also not known whether Unity Fiji Party leader Savenaca Narube would attend. He could not be reached yesterday. Party general secretary Satish Kumar said members would support the march, but could not say whether Mr Narube would march.

Singh expects thousands at march

Fiji Teachers Union’s general secretary Agni Deo Singh  expects “thousands” of supporters to be at the protest march in Nadi town today to back some ATS workers who have been on strike for the past month.

Mr Singh said their members from around Viti Levu would be present in numbers to support the ATS workers.

“The Government has got to realise that we mean business when we want them to recognise the plight of the ATS workers. They have been locked out of their rightful workplaces and need to be reinstated without any conditions,” Mr Singh said.

He said that other union affiliates would also be out in force because they also believed in the cause that ATS workers were fighting for.

“We have received word that many of our affiliate unions are going to be in Nadi,” Mr Singh said.

“This is our right to march and to show solidarity.”

He expects all Fiji Trades Union Congress executives to be at the march.

“Everyone will be there. We will stand together.” Mr Singh said.

National Workers Union president Elisabeta Copeland and general secretary Latileta Qaqa will be representing the NWU, Fiji Nurses Association executive Salanieta Matiavi and other members will represent the nurses while the National Union of Hotel Catering and Tourism Industries Employees executives and members have also confirmed participation in the march.

Members of the Fijian Teachers Association have confirmed that they will be there and will support other union members.

“This is a joint stand. We want to make our voices heard. We want to show that we, the workers, must have our rights cared for.” Asilina Ratu, a retired teacher, said.

Edited by Percy Kean and Nemani Delaibatiki    


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