28 Apr 2010

New Caledonia's former USTKE leader to launch new union on May Day

10:48 am on 28 April 2010

The former leader of New Caledonia's USTKE union, Gerard Jodar, is to launch a new workers' confederation on May Day.

The move follows a split within the USTKE ranks which led to the congress earlier this month choosing its vice-president, Marie-Pierre Goyetche, to assume the leadership.

Mr Jodar is to call his new movement the National Confederation of Pacific Workers which he says will include some of his followers from the days when he ran the USTKE union.

Last June, Mr Jodar was imprisoned for his role in last May's violence at Noumea's domestic airport at the height of a protracted strike at the territory's domestic airline.

In January, an appeal court in New Caledonia ordered his immediate release.