Thursday, 25 October 2007
PRESS RELEASE: SOLIDARITY UNION
4pm, Thursday 25 October
MAORI YESTERDAY: TRADE UNIONS TODAY?
Union activists say that a police raid on a 72-year
old trade unionist in poor health today is part of a
crackdown on all political activists.
This afternoon at 2pm, eight police cars raided the
Orakei house of Jimmy O'Dea, a 72-year-old trade
unionist in poor health. The house was searched under
a warrant mentioning a kidnapping in the area.
Jimmy O'Dea says that when he told the police he was
too old to be involved in any such thing, the police
replied: "No you're not."
"Jimmy O'Dea has been a fighter for both Maori and
trade union rights for decades now," said Joe Carolan,
secretary of Solidarity Union.
"Jimmy helped to organise trade union support for the
Bastion Point occupation in 1978.
"Despite his poor health, he's been helping organise
the new Solidarity union among industrial workers in
"To anyone who knows Jimmy, the idea that he could be
involved in a kidnapping is purely ridiculous," said
"But what is true is that Jimmy is known as a fighter
for workers' rights and Maori rights. The police know
him as a 'troublemaker' from way back.
"If this is a coincidence, it's a very peculiar one,"
"We have been saying that the "anti-terror" raids of
last week are an attempt to strike fear in the heart
of all political activists.
"This raid on a 72-year old man in poor health just
confirms what we've been saying."
For more information, contact Joe Carolan on (021) 186