5 Dec 2005

Air Vanuatu terminates another 19 jobs

12:48 pm on 5 December 2005

Air Vanuatu has terminated the positions of 19 more employees amid escalating tension between the national carrier and the workers union.

The Daily Post reports that no reasons have been provided for the sackings but letters of termination clearly quoted section 49 of the Employment Act which gives the employer the right to hire and fire.

A notice from the company's lawyer was attached warning the employees not to trespass in the company's premises or risk being prosecuted.

The Union is furious over Air Vanuatu's disregard of their grievances, including issues of workers rights and the recent sackings of union-aligned employees.

But Air Vanuatu management insists recent sackings are part of restructuring and are not retaliation at the Union.

Meanwhile, Air Vanuatu management and the government have been criticised for allegedly calling in police and paramilitary forces to quell the union's picket line last week at an industrial action at Port Vila's airport.