MSG Invitations Significant, Poverty & Social Wage, FNPF Devaluation, Nurses, RKS Apology

NA SALA CAVA?  Readers are urged to scroll down to the three "Way Forward" questions, read what others think, and add their own comments.Today is the last day for comments that I'll summarize this week before postingmore question on Friday.

THE SUN ARTICLE. I think some people are reading too much into the Fiji Sun article I criticized yesterday. Many readers agreed with me that the article did Government no favours. I'm sure the PM was embarrassed by its publication.  It was "way over the top", but the article was not typical. Far from it. Most Sun articles are at least as professional as other media, and their coverage often much better.  Anti-Government readers should spare their criticism for The Fiji Times whose typical lack of coverage favourable to Government is constantly  "way over the top"  -- although it seems to have improved a little lately.

A reader commented: You're right, Croz. Anyone who has any sympathy with the regime at all ought to be horrified by this piece in the Fiji Sun. Because it's precisely the kind of crude, unsophisticated propaganda that is guaranteed to be totally unproductive.

MELANESIAN SPEARHEAD GROUP-PLUS. Fiji is hosting the MSG meeting in July, and after consulting members the PM has invited leaders of the Pacific smaller states to attend "because that is the request they put through to me after we were removed from the PI Forum by Australia and New Zealand ... Island states have said that they would like to talk and that would be the only forum that would be available for them to talk to us - the MSG." [This is a significant geopolitical move by Fiji that marginalises Australia and New Zealand. The reaction and uptake will be interesting.]

POOR NEED 'SOCIAL WAGE.'  Integrating services helping the poor and government assistance to provide them with a social wage (that includes the money needed for transport, health and education) will help lift the poor out of poverty, according to USP Development Studies Professor Vijay Naidu, speaking to a Consultation on the Definition of the Poor and their Needs.

“What is needed for our government to do is to bring all these different types of support together and put it in some kind of framework so that we see an integrated process ... What I am saying is not original; it has been reported in the UNDP Fiji Government poverty report, that if we head towards being a low wage economy, it is government's duty to provide subsidies and I’d like to say that the government is doing that.” At the end of today’s workshop, participants are expected to draft a poverty statement for Fiji.

FNPF DEFENDS NATADOLA DEVALUATION. An internal forensic audit into the Natadola Bay resort project suports the writedown from $301 million to $81 million which reflects the resort's actual value. The FNPF is taking steps to hold those accountable for the writedown and has also identified specific actions to ensure that these funds are recovered over time.The FNPF said this will not happen overnight. The Fund has engaged Deloittes from Australia to conduct a forensic investigation into the Natadola Project.

. The nurse training intake for the next three years  will be 170, up from 90, to address the nursing shortage. Health Minister Dr Neil Sharma said the Fiji School of Nursing intake will increase from 90 to 120 and the Fiji National University to 50. Typically, 60 nurses a year left the workforce through retirement or migration. This year 65 nurses have been promoted to create space for new graduates, and 20 nurses who had returned from working overseas had been absorbed into the workforce as senior nurses.

. The PM has apologized to parents, guardians and students for the one week closure of the school due to the kitchen not meeting health standards. The fault lies with the PWD that was given funds a week ago and failed to do anything. The PM, a school old boy, will open the ndew multi-million dollar school Chapel at the end of the month following a request from Old Scholars.

WELL WORTH LOOKING AT. Two items in the left column. Scroll down to see the video of the Queen's 1953 visit to Fiji and Tonga, and further down for the latest political satire in the Namuamua Journal.


Roy said…
MSG ? uptake is not really the issue surely it even if they do come, what is the point , anyone can talk, the issue is money , trade and expertise which none of the MSG can offer. And i suppose diplomatic support is cheap if you don't come with a cheque book... guess who they will they will then turn to pay for new 'intiatives and reforms'?, china and india i hope.
Wild Oscar said…
Most people would accept that the article was way over the top - almost to the point of satire.

So either that makes The Sun's article a very clever piece, or it's a sign of more OTT shyte to come, or it was just a one off. Let's wait and see what's printed over the next few weeks.

But really Croz - the way you go on, anyone would think you hold shares in that paper. Trying to unnecessarily deflect criticism of The Sun onto the Fiji Times merely dilutes the message that ALL papers should show intelligence and balance in their reporting.

For myself - I hope it's just the start in a series of satirical articles. Reading the papers would become much more entertaining.
Roy said…
i don't think the Sun does 'satire'... it is a little more low brow' than that...'slavishly craven' is a very good description of their attitude to the military junta that runs this country.
Croz Walsh said…
@ Wild Oscar ... The FT mention was not intended to deflect criticism although I agree it could have had this effect. It was addressed not to all readers but to anti-Government readers. Roy shows why it was necessary.
Roy said…
I object to your careless characterisation of 'anti-government readers', i/we are not anti-government .. where it is recognised, i/we object to this junta/regime/military and it's appologists/'kapos'. I see no difference in being 'anti-taliban' or 'anti-communist party'.
No more junta human rights abuse said…
You are increasingly becoming eratic. In your view it appears that people who do not support a military junta that deposed a REAL government at the point of a gun, dragged innocent people to the barracks and bashed them, committed horendous human rights abuses that are being well document, and in some cases murdered defenceless people...those who do not support such acts are in your view 'anti-government'. Many would see you as pro-terrorist. Are you?
Or are you just losing the plot?
Croz Walsh said…
@ No more junta ... There's nothing erratic. I'm dealing with the reality of the present and trying to be helpful to a way forward. Can you or Roy say the same?
TheMax said…
@ Roy

Your mind is too small. The MSG countries have the bulk of the Pacific's resources which Australia and New Zealand plunder by controlling them through the Forum Sec. It's time to move away from the two countries because, a look closer at the ANZ governments foreign policies through the years, a much deeper agenda is going on. For example, PACER Plus would decimate all Pacific island countries sovereignties and thus economies.

What most Pacific island leaders feared when they formed the SPF have materialised through the years. it's time for Pacific island countries to really look north. Yes look to China and make genuine trade negotiations without the interference of Australia and New Zealand.
MJ said…
You can never win with that lot Croz. Even when you come out with a story criticizing the government you still get wacked by "anti government readers" like Roy and No more Junta. Oh I forgot, Roy isn't an anti government reader. Sorry I was a bit confused by your posts. Just to convince me that you aren't anti government Roy, can you should list just one good thing that the Government has done. Surely you can think of one.
TheMax said…
The truth is, if we look at the economies of the Pacific island countries, the MSG countries can go without Samoa and the other smaller island states. Samoa doesn't have an economy. They have a fake one since they are still a protectorate of New Zealand and the bulk of their revenue come from remittances from New Zealand.
Anonymous said…
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Blinded by the Bling said…
Max – you’re back! Good to see you writing again. I was beginning to think you’d left our Fiji paradise for paradises greener.

You want to stop ANZ from plundering Fiji’s resources and allow the Chinese (and now presumably, the Burmese) to do so instead? Great idea. They’re far more generous with their bling. Just ask the Sudanese. And the Zambians. And the Congolese. And the – oh you get the idea.

Oh, hang on a second, let’s look at those mineral leases again. How many have been granted to Australian companies and how many to Chinese? H’mmm, seems like you’re a mite behind the times with your suggestion.

Very charitable of you to bring up the fact that the MSG countries can do without Samoa and the smaller island states. Not the other way around though, eh? You might find that the Chinese and Australians can do without the MSG countries too. Not the other way around though, eh?

So perhaps a philosophy of pointing a finger at the useless smaller island nations, implying that they should ‘bend over or else’ when Fiji says so, might be considered a little hypocritical. If the hands are out for some goodies when the sweetie parcel is handed around at the next MSG meeting, so what? The hands are always out from the MSG when the slightly bigger bag of lollies is handed out by Japan, China, Taipei and the Australians. Expediency rules.

As for Samoa’s economy relying on overseas remittances making it a ‘fake’ economy – well. Such insight. Such blind hypocrisy once again. You haven’t by any chance just retired from your job as a leading macro economist have you?
Roy said…
i saw an example previously of a comment likening this to a rape victim being told to 'get over it' and come to terms with the reality...sound familiar.. this is not a scandal or an incident... this is coup culture and with your help... a change into a permanent military regime with a future puppet government and judiciary fearful of stepping out of line....thanks for your help
MJ said…
Roy, I stand corrected. How anyone could have ever thought you were anti-government is totally beyond me. You latest post has completely cleared up that misunderstanding.

Also, you have tried to make an analogy with my "get over it" comment to a rape victim. The two situations are completely different and the context where I used that comment has no relationship to the situation of a rape victim.
Roy said…
@MJ thankfully your thoughts are as considered and appreciated by me as they probably are by this military regime. I can see more similarities in teh current situation and a rape victim than any one 'good thing' this militray junta has done. yes , bring out into the open those who are complicit in htier iollgeal acts and illegal oaths and appointments. Should be handy when it comes to gaoling them.
Croz Walsh said…
@ Anonymous. I've deleted your comment because it broke the rules in being anonymous, but the comment needs some answer.

You are correct in saying CoupFourPointFive has a much larger readership but this is not due to "my bluster and pomposity" nor do I find it "amusing." There are several possible explanations. Here are three: (1) C4.5 is staffed by a team of journalists with many and worldwide contacts. This blog is a one-man effort. (2) All anti-government blogs provide links to each other thus generating more readers. I provide fewer links and only two to anti-government blogs. I used to provide more but have deleted those that advocate violence and racism.(3) There are more anti-government blogs and angry supporters than there are pro- or moderate blogs and their supporters but there is no way of knowing whether either set of numbers is representative.
Anonymous said…
The link to FijiToday doesn't work anyway.

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