Showing posts from March 15, 2009

An Apt and Wise Old Song

(For Fiji just now)
You've got to accentuate the positive
 Eliminate the negative  Latch on to the affirmative  Don't mess with Mister In-Between
You've got to spread joy up to the maximum  Bring gloom down to the minimum  Have faith or pandemonium  Liable to walk upon the scene
(To illustrate his last remark
 Jonah in the whale, Noah in the ark  What did they do  Just when everything looked so dark)
Man, they said we better  Accentuate the positive  Eliminate the negative  Latch on to the affirmative  Don't mess with Mister In-Between  No, do not mess with Mister In-Between  Do you hear me, hmm?
Click here to hear popular American crooner Bing Crosby and Beth Midler sing the whole song.

(+) They're At It Again. This Time Sir Rabbie

Hardly had I posted an item on the stoning of Attar Singh's car (in which I raised the outside possibility that it could have been by anti-Interim Government supporters seeking to embarrass the IG and derail the PPDF) when a a further development gave support to my "outside possibility."

In a feature, "PM's Office in Damage Control as PNG Queries Insults," the Fiji Times reports anger in PNG after it was reported the "[Fiji] interim administration rubbished the integrity of former PNG prime minister Sir Rabbie Namaliu after rejecting him to be chief mediator at the upcoming President's Political Dialogue Forum."
Jone Dakuvula, the Forum Coordinator, having earlier refuted media reports that Sir Rabbie had been appointed as chief mediator ("no such decision   ...the matter is still to be decided by the political parties meeting on April 9") NOW had to deny the latest misinformation. In fact, he said, it was the IG that had reco…

Last Week in Fiji: Second Week of March


Monday 9th. "Who Owns the (PI) Forum?"  A background paper  the Forum by its former Director of Economic Governance, Dr Roman Grynberg, in which he discusses the debate on whether or not Australia and New Zealand should be members, and their near "ownership" today.
"Un-Pacific Neighbours". Extracts from Thakur Ranjit Singh's article in the Fiji Times in which he answers statements attacking Bainimarama by Samoan PM Tuilaepa.
"What, Exactly, Did the Ambassador Say?" in which I expressed doubts that US Ambassador McGann's speech to a Prophet Mohammed's Birthday meeting had been accurately reported.  The press reported that he'd urged Fijians to put pressure on the Interim Government.
Thursday 12th.   "PM's Unwise Decision on PPDF Meeting" in which I gave reasons why the PM's decision not to invite the SDL party was unwise. [It later transpired the media had got this wrong. The SDL was invited.]
"Media Did D…

(o) Revisiting the International Bar Association's Damning Report

I was never very happy with the IBA Report. There was an imbalance in those contacted. The Interim Government seemed to be blamed for all of Fiji's legal and custodial inadequacies, even those from before the Coup.

It was just too anti-Interim Government which, to some extent, could be expected. The Interim Government had denied the IBA Team entry to Fiji (as a result of their first visit when they interviewed mainly anti-Goverment people) and the Attorney-General's refusal to join their telecommunications did not help.

But others in the legal profession could have been contacted about Chief Justice Daniel Fatiaki's dismissal and other charges made by the IBA Team. Testimony did not have to rely on Graham Leung, DorSamiNaidu and other anti-Government people.

Nonetheless, despite these misgivings I agreed with the Report that the dismissal of the Chief Justice was illegal.Until today.     Read on ...........

IBA Member Disputes Fiji Report

Fiji Times 18 March 2009. Full text.


Who Dunnit? Attar Singh's Car

All major English-medium newspapers ran articles on last week's night-time stoning of Attar Singh's car. All those invited to comment by the media (except Government spokesman Major Neumi Leweni) called upon the Interim Government and the Police to condemn this and other recent similar actions. The attacks would seem, as Mike Beddoes told the Fiji Sun, to be the work of "elements linked or sympathetic to the Interim Government."

The Police said the enquiry was especially difficult: it was dark and there were few witnesses.

Major Leweni said, "The Interim Government does not need to be told what to do." But I'm afraid it does, if it does or says nothing. The DepSec. of Information could have approved, condemned, or said he would respond later. The one thing he could not do was not answer the question. This could --and no doubt has-- been taken as approval. Showing no knowledge of (civilian) tactics, he has played straight into the hands of the IG's opp…

(G) Statement on Pramod Rae "Leak" by Jone Dakuvula

See my earlier posting "How to Stir the Pot by Pramod Rae"
"The person that has provided information to Fiji Live of the names of those recommended by the Commonwealth and United Nations has dishonoured the specific request from the United Nations Secretary General and the Commonwealth Secretary General (so stated in their letter) that confidentiality must be respected by political parties and stakeholders in the political dialogue process.
It was the National Federation Party spokesman Pramod Rae who first leaked the letter of the United Nations and Commonwealth Secretary General to the media last week claiming he was legally obliged to do so and that it was in the interest of the media to know.
If this type of leakage to the news media of confidential information provided by the United Nations and Commonwealth continues, then political parties should not be surprised if the UN and Commonwealth decide to withdraw as independent mediators.
The person or political party …

(o+) You Can't Please Everybody: Reactions to the pre-PPDF Meeting

Almost everyone (minor party GVP and CAMV party representatives excepted) seemed content with the agenda agreed upon by political leaders at Friday's Political Parties Leaders' Forum meeting. Former PM Laisenia Qarase spoke highly of the meeting. Former Opposition Leader Mike Beddoes was reported as saying the Forum went well and that everyone was presented an equal opportunity to express their views freely on all matters listed on the agenda. He added that the outcome of the Forum was significant considering how things had turned out in the past six months. Even the press was enthusiastic. "Political Leaders Find Some Common Ground" (Fiji Times); "Beddoes Happy with Forum Outcome" (Fiji Sun); "SDL Hails Political Party Meeting" (Fiji Live).

But not so the Fiji Daily Post. Its Saturday super-large front page banner headline read "No Change, No Polls". The paper went on to write about "an ultimatum issued to political leaders " …