28 Nov 2012

British trade unions speak out on plans for Fiji's leader to head international sugar body

4:22 pm on 28 November 2012

Britain's Trade Union Congress has condemned reported plans by the London-based international trade body for the sugar industry to make Fiji's interim leader its new chairman.

It has been widely reported that Commodore Frank Bainimarama is likely to be made chair at this week's meeting of the International Sugar Organisation.

The union group says the ISO must be staggeringly naive or grossly irresponsible to consider making a military dictator its chair especially given his regime has broken the organisation's own rules.

The ISO's rules require member states to grant fair labour standards to sugar workers.

But earlier this month the International Labour Organisation, adopted a resolution condemning Fiji for its abuses of workers' rights, both in its sugar mills and on its sugar cane plantations.

In last week's Budget Commodore Bainimarama made provision for funding for Fiji to host next year's annual meeting of the ISO.