31 Jan 2013

Solomons opposition urges contrition to end teacher strike

4:23 pm on 31 January 2013

The Solomon Islands opposition leader, Derek Sikua, says the government needs to admit it is wrong, and make amends with striking teachers so they can go back to work.

It is almost two weeks into the school year, and thousands of teachers refuse to go back to classes because the government failed to include promised salary rises and back-pay in the budget.

The government referred the issue to the Trade Dispute Panel, which ordered teachers to withdraw their strike notice, but this has been ignored, and the industrial action continues.

Dr Sikua says the government should never have referred the matter to the Trade Dispute Panel in the first place.

"They have just exacerbated the situation, so I think the approach by government of not wanting to back down after they have made a serious mistake is the wrong way to go. They should have just been humble enough to say they are sorry and that they will fix this problem as soon as possible."

The Solomon Islands opposition leader, Derek Sikua.