20 Aug 2009

Opposition queries French Polynesia deal to settle strike

11:50 am on 20 August 2009

The opposition in French Polynesia has questioned the deal signed last night to end a strike by the main unions over the high cost of living.

The stoppage had little following and ended within a day when the government vowed not to increase fuel prices this year, which prompted the opposition to say that taxpayers will foot the bill.

The accord to settle the strike provides no concession to lower utility prices as demanded in the lead-up to the strike.

The publisher of the Tahiti-Pacifique monthly, Alex du Prel, says in some sectors not a single person joined the strike.

"If you look at what has been going on in the past 20 years over here, you see that all the union leaders have been rattling sabres and making big noise either have become ministers or been elected councilmen for French Polynesia - that means they get cushy jobs."

Alex du Prel

Despite the agreement, one union leader, Ronald Teroorotua, has said it won't solve the root cause.