Drink­ing two bot­tles of beer af­ter work ‘im­por­tant’

At­tar Singh de­fends crit­i­cises NFP plan to drop price of lo­cal beer

Fiji Sun - - Vote 2018 - YOGESH CHAN­DRA Edited by Naisa Koroi Feed­back: yogesh.chan­dra@fi­jisun.com.fj

The Na­tional Fed­er­a­tion Party be­lieves it “...is im­por­tant” that every worker should get the op­por­tu­nity to have at least two bot­tles of beer at the end of each week.

Th­ese were the sen­ti­ments raised on Fri­day by NFP can­di­date and for­mer trade union­ist, At­tar Singh, dur­ing the party’s cam­paign at the Bulileka Sanatan Col­lege in Labasa. “It is our claim that each worker— af­ter work­ing for a week is en­ti­tled to at least two bot­tles of beer at the end of the week. This is im­por­tant,” he said. NFP had an­nounced last week while launch­ing its man­i­festo that it plans to re­duce the duty on lo­cal­ly­man­u­fac­tured beer by 20 per cent. The an­nounce­ment sparked ou­trage from a num­ber of women and moth­ers who said life would get much harder for them, it would lead to more fam­ily dis­putes and women and chil­dren would feel threat­ened. But Mr Singh said drink­ing two bot­tles of beer was rea­son­able and it would not re­sult in any fam­ily dis­putes.

“Not ev­ery­one will have the funds to buy more beer should its price be re­duced as op­posed to peo­ple say­ing that peo­ple will start drink­ing more beer,” he said.

“Cost of liv­ing has in­creased and NPF will en­sure that peo­ple are able to af­ford ba­sic items.

“If the sec­ond-hand cloth­ing in­dus­try was not in Fiji peo­ple would not even have clothes to wear,” he claimed.

He re­it­er­ated that party leader Bi­man Prasad al­ways said the $5 min­i­mum wage would not re­sult in any job losses or clo­sure of any fac­to­ries. This is dis­puted by busi­ness own­ers, who say jobs and ex­ports will fall.

“We also need to strengthen the union move­ment so that work­ers would get the power one more time,” Mr Singh said.

“The civil ser­vice con­tract sys­tem will be re­moved by NFP.” An­other can­di­date, Par­mod Chand, said NFP wanted to bring hap­pi­ness into the lives of every Fi­jian. NFP can­di­date Waisele Kanavo said what­ever NFP said yes­ter­day, to­day or to­mor­row, was not a lie.

Photo: Yogesh Chan­dra

Na­tional Fed­er­a­tion Party can­di­date At­tar Singh (mid­dle) dur­ing the party rally at Bulileka Sanatan Col­lege on November 9, 2018.

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