9 Aug 2007

Some striking Fiji nurses return to work

8:01 am on 9 August 2007

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As the Fiji nurses strike enters its 17th day, some of them have started going back to work for fear of further loss of pay.

82 nurses are reported to have returned to work at the Colonial War Memorial Hospital in Suva, 20 in the northern division and others in small sub-divisional hospitals and medical centres.

The general secretary of the Fiji Nurses Association, Kuini Lutua, says nurses are returning to work because they do not want to lose more pay.

Although she has refused to give the total number still on strike, she says returnees have not affected their industrial action.

The interim minister for health, Dr Jona Senilagakali, says the strikers will not be paid and the money saved will be used to pay those retired nurses and others who have been helping during the strike.

Mrs Lutua claims the loss of salary will be illegal because the nurses have been absent from work with notice.