15 Mar 2012

ACTU maintains stance on Fiji despite constitution plans

7:40 pm on 15 March 2012

The President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Ged Kearney, says it will not ease its stance against the Fiji regime despite the announcement of details for a new constitution.

She says the plans announced last week looks like a good thing on the face of it but the regime has already made worrying comments which raise doubts about transparency and freedoms.

She says she is still hearing stories from unionists that they are taken in by either police or the military and intimidated or interrogated.

"They are made to do things that are humiliating and demoralising like crawl around on their knees while they get beaten. They're asked to run away. If you run very quickly and get away in time, (they) won't be able to catch you or indeed fire guns at you."

Ged Kearney says news that the SDL Party has not been allowed a permit to discuss its submission on the constitution also raises doubts the process wil be robust and transparent.