8 May 2012

Fiji Teachers Union wants new Public Order Act removed

1:53 pm on 8 May 2012

The Fiji Teachers' Union has added its voice to calls for the removal of the Public Order Amendment Decree.

The decree replaced the emergency regulations in force since the regime abolished the constitution in 2009.

The union which represents half of Fiji's 8,000 teachers says the decree restricts debate and free speech.

The union's General Secretary Agni Deo Singh says this was evident at the very annual general meeting which passed the resolution, being held this week in Lautoka.

"In a normal situation, members would have stood up, and spoken against it very very vehemently, but this time around they were very quiet and passive. Although they supported it throughout, so we could see, they still have that fear."

Agni Deo Singh says union members are also concerned about eroded working conditions, the lack of government consultation with the union and what they say is a meagre three percent salary rise, the first in seven years.