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Seasonal workers damaging Fiji's reputation will be suspended: Fiji Labour Minister

Seasonal workers that damage Fiji’s reputation under the New Zealand Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) Work Scheme and the Australia Seasonal Worker Programme (SWP) will not be considered for future seasonal work employment opportunities for four years.

This was highlighted by the Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Jone Usamate after receiving reports from the Government of New Zealand recently on the misconduct and disorderly behaviour of some Fijian seasonal workers.

Minister Usmate said that  the reputation of Fijian workers is paramount, thus, a 4 year suspension will be placed on the village/settlement of the offending worker as stated under the Foreign Seasonal Employment Policy of the Employment Ministry.

“Recent reports revealed that the issues raised by the NZ employers are alcohol related, failing to report to work, not showing respect, poor leadership, unhygienic living, high absenteeism and undue influence from the Fijian community in New Zealand.” Minister Usamate said.

“These seasonal workers were employed with Provine, Bostok, Mr. Apple, Teamwork and Apata in New Zealand.

“Thus, the following villages/settlements are now put on a 4 year suspension from participating in the seasonal work scheme: Tuatua of Tikina Mudu in Lomaiviti; Dogoru of Tikina Wailevu, Nubu/Sasa of Tikina Nadogo, Vitina of Tikina Dogotuki, Lomaloma of Tikina Seaqaqa in Macuata; Makolei of Tikina Solevu, Nasolo of Tikina Nadi in Bua;  Nakobo of Tikina Cakaudrove, Vatukaroa & Natuvu of Tikina Saqani in Cakaudrove; Davetalevu / Matacula / Nakorovou of Tikina Namalata, Nadrano / Lawaki of Tikina Namena, Luvunavuaka / Natalaira of Tikina Dawasamu, Nabulini of Tikina Nailega, Namoka / Natuvatuvavatu / Nayavu of Tikina Nayavu, Naivicula of Tikina Naloto, Natuva of Tikina Taivugalei, Dakuinuku of Tikina Sawakasa in Tailevu; Nadala of Tikina Savatu in Ba; and Wauosi of Tikina Namataku in Navosa .  The suspension is effective immediately.”

The Minister reiterated that the decision to suspend workers and their villages/settlements is not a sudden or new decision made by Government but has been clearly conveyed during the Ministry’s Tikina based recruitment and consultation nationwide.

Minister Usamate emphasised during the recent consultations held in the province of Rewa and Naitasiri, on the need to select the right people who can build our reputation and at the same time, he expressed that teams that damage Fiji’s reputation will face the consequences, where the whole village will be affected.

The re-engagement of workers from the affected villages/settlements will be at the discretion of the Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations.SOURCE: DEPTFO NEWS
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