13 Mar 2007

Fiji Islands Revenue and Customs Authority cuts employees pay by five per cent

9:53 am on 13 March 2007

The Fiji Islands Revenue and Customs Authority, a statutory organisation set up by the government, has followed the public service in implementing a 5% pay cut for its 765 employees.

The pay cut is due to come into effect from Thursday but Fiji TV reports that the Authority's Staff Association has filed court action to stop it.

The Authority's chief executive, Tevita Banuave, has told staff in a circular that the reason for the pay cut is a reduction in their annual government grant from 32-million US dollars to 28-million in the recent revised budget.

But the general secretary of the Authority's Staff Association and former labour minister, Kenneth Zinck, says the pay cut was for civil servants and not statutory bodies.

Mr Zinck says no unilateral decisions should be taken without consultation with the union and smack of dictatorship at its worst.

Mr Banuve says the Authority's employees are treated the same as civil servants and had taken a 12.5% pay cut after the 2000 coup.