Fiji Newspaper Workers Win Industrial Dispute

The International Federation of Journalists, the global organisation of journalists representing over 500,000 journalists worldwide, has congratulated the workers from Fiji's Daily Post Newspaper for their recent win of their industrial dispute.

Workers returned to work after the Fiji Labour Ministry officially recognised their protest as a trade dispute. Approximately 60 workers from the Post have been on strike since November 7.

The breakthrough came after the Public Enterprises Minister, Irami Matairavula, told the Labour Minister Kenneth Zinck that the striking workers formed the majority and ought to be recognised.

The editorial and production workers had been pressing for better salaries and working conditions, alleging that the Post, in which the Fiji Government maintains a 44 percent stake, had breached the country's labour laws by failing to pay them superannuation and other entitlements.

They also called for the removal of editor/publisher Yashwant Gaundar and board chairman Malakai Nayaga. Gaundar has a reputation for paying staff badly and exploiting them. The strikers did not succeed in this demand.

It is only through collective action like that of the workers from the Daily Post, that journalists are able to maintain and strengthen their professional and industrial conditions.