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Opposition Parties Stand by Stance

Opposition political parties are in damage control mode after the Textile, Clothing and Footwear Council of Fiji revealed that 7000 Fijians would lose jobs overnight if the minimum wage rate
24 Oct 2018 12:41
Opposition Parties Stand by Stance
Party leaders (from left) Sitiveni Rabuka (SODELPA), Tupou Draunidalo (HOPE) and Biman Prasad (National Federation Party).

Opposition political parties are in damage control mode after the Textile, Clothing and Footwear Council of Fiji revealed that 7000 Fijians would lose jobs overnight if the minimum wage rate increased drastically.

The leaders of three main Opposition Parties say:

HOPE leader Tupou Draunidalo:

“I would like to meet with the council to explain our policy to them in an open forum or closed. Their choice of forum.”

SODELPA leader Sitiveni Rabuka:

“We will look at their profit and if they are profitable then they can pay the minimum wage of $4 an hour. There are a lot of ways that they can do to ensure that it happens. They can be subsidised.

“The machines that they use can be brought in duty free. They are certain things that are levied upon them that can be reduced or taken away to ensure that Fijians are employed.

“It will not be done just anyhow. It will be analysed and they will in fact make their own submission about minimum wage rate and it will not just come in.

“It will not be imposed. It will be part of a wage review and minimum wage or salary review. We are going to bring it to $4 minimum.”

National Federation Party leader Biman Prasad:

“This is pure scaremongering by the TCF industry. They are deliberately getting into the political arena to support the FijiFirst Party.

“They have run to the media with a press release. They have not sat down to talk to us about our proposals.

“They have not discussed with us how we intend to support employers with Government assistance for the phasing in of the minimum living wage.

“In their press release they have not talked about the difference between $5 an hour – which we propose – and the $10 an hour rate which another party proposes. They are deliberately mixing up the two proposals to scare people.”

Edited by Epineri Vula

Feedback:  wati.talebula@fijisun.com.fj

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