13 Jan 2010

CCF blasts Fiji pension cuts to regime critics

5:17 pm on 13 January 2010

The head of Fiji's Citizens Constitutional Forum, the CCF, says the interim regime has gone a step too far by passing a decree to stop pension payments to its critics.

The interim Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama has told Radio Fiji that the decree was passed last week and the pension cuts are effective from this week for people who have spoken out against the interim regime.

He didn't say how many retirees have lost their pension and the National Provident Fund, which is a key pension provider, has been unavailable for comment.

However the CCF's head, the Reverend Akuila Yabaki, says such a decree amounts to an abuse of power and a violation of human rights.

"Our freedom from discrimination; rights to life, liberty and personal security; freedom of opinion and information; rights to social security; freedom from state of personal interference in the above rights if the state interferes in people's private affairs, private life."

The Reverend Yabaki says the decree undermines the national dialogue forum that's been called for and will hamper attempts to move the country forward.