28 Jul 2004

Fiji military eyes contracts to stave off redundancies

10:33 am on 28 July 2004

Fiji's military will be hiring out its services to reduce the risk of redundancies and ensure employment for thousands of soldiers.

The commander, Commodore Bainimarama, has told the Fiji Times he is worried about proposed plans to reduce the size of the army because of its cost.

Because of the uncertainty, Commodore Bainimarama says the military has taken the initiative to provide its services to the public for a fee.

Their first contract is with Telecom Fiji in which soldiers are helping in the installation of 86 satellite stations around the country to improve rural telecommunications.

Commodore Bainimarama says military engineers are being subcontracted to the Public Works Department for infrastructure development.

As well, the military is providing confidence courses for employees of commercial companies