30 Jan 2014

NZCTU supports bid for UN inquiry into Fiji labour rights

1:59 pm on 30 January 2014

New Zealand's Council of Trade Unions says it's supporting a bid by the International Trade Union Confederation for a United Nations Commission of Inquiry into labour rights in Fiji.

The CTU secretary, Peter Conway, says the recent arrest of union leader Daniel Urai and five others following a strike at Nadi's Sheraton hotels is symptomatic of a government crackdown on union rights in the country.

Mr Conway says he hopes the New Zealand government will also get involved in taking the matter, and other alleged cases of government intimidation, to the International Labour Organisation.

"We had a situation where the International Labour Organisation went in on a mission in 2012 and they were evicted by the government before they could carry out any work. So it has to go up to another level which is why we're supporting a formal commission of inquiry into labour rights issues in Fiji and we hope the New Zealand government will be supporting that bid."

Peter Conway says the CTU is hoping to meet the New Zealand foreign minister, Murray McCully, soon.