Social Protection initiative supports Community Based Emergency Employment (CBEE) project in Fiji

A team from the Fiji National Provident Fund (FNPF) and the Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority (FIRCA) have successfully registered CBEE participating farmers into the national superannuation scheme.

News | 27 May 2016
Fiji National Provident Fund - FNPF field staff register villagers in Tailevu, Fiji.
Workers in informal employment in Fiji not contributing to Fiji National Provident Fund- FNPF in rural areas, accounts for 73.8% of the population according to a Fiji Bureau of Statistics survey (EUS 2011). These workers, do not have any form of social protection to support loss of income.

The Community-Based Emergency Employment (CBEE) or cash for work project, was expanded to be more socially inclusive. It included Occupational Health and Safety and Child Labour components and a social security intervention. Existing FNPF members in these 3 villages were encouraged to resume their voluntary contributions and villagers in the communities not registered in the FNPF scheme were encourage to join.

The Ministry of Employment, Productivity & Industrial Relations (MEPIR), the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) and National Disaster Management Office (NDMO) via the Ministry of Strategic Planning have been working with ILO in  3 villages - Nabita, Nabulini and Manu, in the tikina of Nalega and province of Tailevu following the devastation by TC Winston. These villages fall under government priority area 7, the highest on Fiji’s main island Viti Levu.

A team from FNPF and FIRCA have visited the three villages to register members and process their joint FNPF/FIRCA membership cards. ILO will pay for the $50 membership levy for new members and $7.50 each for existing members following this exercise.

The Community Based Emergency Employment (CBEE) programme has provided wages and tools to support three villages in Tailevu to clear farm areas that were damaged by the recent cyclone and commence replanting. The immediate objective of the CBEE was to support food security and loss of income of the identified villages through a social protection lens.

Workers were registered in each of the villages with the work being supervised by the responsible community leader. The ILO provided safety equipment and tools for the workers whilst the Ministry of Employment provided awareness training on child labour and occupational safety and health. As work was undertaken, simple Time-Sheets were kept that showed the hours worked by each registered worker. These time sheets were verified by ILO before weekly wages were disbursed during the 10 days exercise.