Employees from Général Import, the main importer in Wallis and Futuna, are on strike.
If strikes are common in French Polynesia and New Caledonia, they are very rare in Wallis and Futuna. The employees of the main importer in Futuna and Futuna are on strike since Friday 7 May. This is the first time in the company’s thirty-year history. The 36 employees of Général Import have written a booklet containing 18 demands.
Wage increases and holidays
The striking employees are demanding wage increases, holidays and a day off on Saturday. They are also contesting a dismissal that they consider unfair. The strikers are demanding the reinstatement of the recently dismissed employee. Due to a lack of manpower, the work is currently being done by the company’s managers.
Didier Leroux, a New Caledonian tycoon
It should be noted that the company General Import belongs to the Caledonian businessman Didier Leroux. He is the boss of one of the largest business groups in New Caledonia. He owns a drug import company, a shipping company and companies that manufacture flour, rice and animal feed. The former pharmacist Didier Leroux was also a politician for a long time. In 2004, he was a member of the government in charge of… the economy. Didier Leroux is the brother-in-law of Vincent Bolloré, one of the richest businessmen in Europe, who employs 79,000 people in 130 countries.
Photo : General Import dock in Mata Utu > Credit : http://generalimport-wallis.com/