10 Jul 2002

Solomons public servants left with no option, but to strike

4:40 pm on 10 July 2002

The head of the Solomon Islands Public Employee Union or SIPEC, says he has warned the government 4-thousand public servants will strike tomorrow if they are not paid oustanding wages.

Clement Waiwori says he has been given a mandate by the Nurse Association, the Paramedics Association and the College of Education Lecturers Association, to act on their behalf.

Mr Waiwori says the workers have not been paid for a month and he has warned the prime minister that if they do not get the money tomorrow, they will all walk off the job.

Mr Waiwori says he is worried about the effect on medical services but he says the government has left him no alternative.

"I have no option. I've been mandated by the general membership to do that and we have already resolved in one of the recent joint public sector union meetings, in a general meeting, that if the government continues to pay salaries not in time then the only course of action we will take is the action we are taking now."

Clement Waiwori says the 2-thousand teachers already striking will take the number of public servants on strike to nearly 6-thousand.