The National Federation Party says since workers’ rights are human rights, it stands shoulder to shoulder in the march in Nadi this Saturday and in full support of the locked-out Air Terminal Services workers who have been prevented from returning to work in a company that they have 49% shares for, for the past 27 days.
NFP Leader Professor Biman Prasad said while regrettably he won’t be in Nadi on Saturday as he is in India attending the PIO Parliamentary Conference with the other two NFP Members of Parliament–Honourable Parmod Chand and Honourable Prem Singh—an event also attended by some Indo-Fijian Government MPs, he has urged all NFP members and well-wishers to show solidarity by participating in the march.
“Throughout our 54-year history we have always supported any legitimate and lawful action to highlight the plight and grievances of our ordinary workers and aggrieved citizens. Saturday’s march is no exception and our Vice President in Nadi Mr Faizal Koya will lead the NFP supporters along with our Nadi stalwarts”.
“It is important to show solidarity towards the ATS workers who are victims of heavy-handed Government appointees and the ATS Management’s dictatorial and authoritarian decisions in total defiance of the law which requires the Employment Minister to describe the lockout as illegal”.
“We have sighted a Memorandum dated 16th December 2017, in which the acting ATS CEO instructed the ATS security officers not to allow ATS workers who on that day had gone to have their shareholders meeting, to enter the premises until further notice. The memorandum is signed by the acting CEO, Mr Hari Mani”.
“Despite the existence of this memorandum that clearly ordered the Security Officers and the Managers to execute the lock out, the Employment Minister failed abysmally in his duty to declare the lockout illegal and instead declared the workers’ action as illegal. This seemingly all points to the regulatory capture and collusion between the Government and all their appointees”.
“It is gravely preposterous that the Employment Minister in a later statement said he agreed with the Management’s action, thereby clearly showing his partiality and inability to act as a mediator”.
“Therefore, those who have the rights and freedoms of workers at heart should come and fully show their support and solidarity towards the ATS workers inhumanely locked out in the drains, and their families”.
Professor Biman Prasad
Attached: ATS Acting CEO Memorandum