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Economy

ORIGINAL FRENCH ARTICLE: Le LKP a-t-il raison d’appeler à la grève générale ?

by Dominique Bègles

Is the LKP Right to Call a General Strike on Guadeloupe?

Translated Monday 11 January 2010, by Gene Zbikowski and reviewed by Derek Hanson

Elie Domota and the LKP collective are calling for a general strike on January 20.

Is Guadeloupe headed for a strike ?

“Nou paka fè dèyè!” (“We’re not backing down”!) says the LKP. With its spokesman, Elie Domota, who is also the general secretary of the UGTG (The General Union of the Workers of Guadeloupe), it is calling not only for a demonstration on Saturday in Pointe-à-Pitre, but also for a general strike beginning on January 20 and of unlimited duration. At the heart of the conflict is the application of the February 20 and March 4, 2009 accords, following a 44-day strike.

“As concerns food prices, gasoline prices, and wages, the government is moving backwards,” the LKP notes. The price of gasoline has in fact recorded a new four-eurocent hike since the beginning of the month, supposedly to adjust for market prices. The decision to allow an increase in gasoline prices is an “illegal decision on which there was no consultation,” according to the LKP collective. As for the 200 euro wage increase for low salaries, the government has changed the basis for calculating low salaries, excluding 20,000 potential beneficiaries, of the 50,000 initially expected.

For the LKP, this is proof that “profiteering is trying to regain control in the country.” The French government, through its Minister for Overseas Départements and Territories, Marie-Luce Penchard, reacted by accusing the LKP of wanting to “relaunch a strike movement that will destroy this territory.”


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