FIJI Trades Union Congress national secretary Felix Anthony says Fiji's independence anniversary is an occasion and an opportunity to reflect "on our long hard road since 10th October 1970 as a nation and recommit ourselves to the ideals and principles of a truly free and democratic State".
In a statement, Mr Anthony cited the lyrics of the national anthem, saying they presented an even greater challenge for the nation.
"We are in the midst of rewriting our constitution for the fourth time within this period and continue to strive to find the freedom that all citizens, as a birthright, must have and enjoy," he said.
"A right that is fundamental to human rights of all citizens.
"This freedom has been elusive for the past few years and is recognised as a violation by the international community.
"The FTUC calls upon all citizens to reflect on our history and recognise that we have a responsibility to ensure that the future cannot be more of the same.
"Only then can we and our children truly celebrate the glory and the hope in our Fiji.
"We need to commit ourselves to multiracialism and democracy just as trade unions have existed and persevered through many difficulties and have remained intact."