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Law Crackdown Planned On Unions

Published: Mon 2 Oct 2000 02:24 PM
Law Crackdown Planned On Unions
USP Pacific Journalism Online: http://www.usp.ac.fj/journ/
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SUVA: Fiji's military backed interim administration plans to impose draconian new laws to counter union efforts aimed at "sabotaging" the national economy with trade sanctions, according to news reports.
The Sunday Times reported today that the interim government would impose a new decree similar to the Public Emergency Regulations which came into force after the 1987 military coups.
It would target people who "disrupt the peace or sabotage the economy", the paper reported.
Attorney-General Alipate Qetaki said it would be legislation tailor-made for the "protection of Fiji and its people".
"Cabinet decided on the new legislation on Tuesday and now we are looking at all policy issues," he was quoted in the Sunday Times as saying.
The government would promulgate the new decree to prevent activities that can lead to the sabotage of the country's economy which would be detrimental to the people of the country, the paper said.
It is undestood that the legislation would cover individuals and trade union movements in a bid to curtail imposition of smart sanctions or calls for democracy as quickly as possible.
Political parties and trade union organisations have hit out at the new legislation, saying it will not work.
Fiji Trade Union Congress general secretary Felix Anthony told the Sunday Times any moves to block fundamental rights would be opposed.
"We will fight any moves to to curtail people's fundamental rights. This type of legislation will not help at all," he said.
+++niuswire

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