Sam Speight's DVD Claim Untrue; Condolences for Japanese; Asian Investment, Tourism and the Sevens
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N0265. SAM SPEIGHT SACKED BY HIS VANUA. Former SDL Cabinet Minister (and elder brother of George Speight who was the frontsman for the 2000 Coup that overthrew the FLP-led Chaudhry Government) was arrested and allegedly beaten two weeks ago for breaking the Public Emergency Regulations and distributing an anti-government DVD made in Australia, and is now seeking political asylum in Australia. He claimed he was distributing the DVD on behalf of the Naloto vanua (clan) of Naloto to which he belongs.
Not so, said Naloto spokesman Tevita Tamanisau. The people of Naloto were embarrassed by Tikoinasau's comments. At a meeting last week the chiefs of Naloto unanimously agreed to sack Tikonisau as chairman and trustee of the Dritabua Dairy Farmers Co-operative which is owned by the people of Naloto.
The meeting, which was attended by the Tui Naloto and all heads of the landowning units from the villages of Nasau, Naveicovatu and Naivicula, disagreed with the comments by Tikoinasau which were posted on the Internet.
Tamanisau said the people of Naloto had sought forgiveness from PM Bainimarama about the events of 2000 and they supported the current administration.
N0266. THE JAPANESE DISASTERS. The President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, accompanied by First Lady Adi Koila Nailatikau, signed the earthquake and tsunami condolence book at the Japanese Embassy in Suva on Friday. At least 8,000 people are believed to have died and another 12,000 remain missing. The disaster also damaged a nuclear power plant, leading to fears of a radiation leak. Earlier in the day,the PM also signed the condolence book. -- Based on Fiji Times.
N0267. ASIAN INVESTMENT, TOURISM AND THE SEVENS. The PM, the A-G and tourist officials were in Hong Kong last week for further discussions on the global bonds and also to attend the Hong Kong leg of Tourism Fiji’s Road show, which shows the importance Government is attaching to Asian investment and tourism.
According to the World Travel and Tourism Council’s 2011 projections for Fiji tourism provides employment directly and indirectly for approximately 63,000 people, or 25% of total employment. It involves an investment of approximately F$233 million and will have a total contribution to GDP of 28% this year. In 10 years time, tourism’s contribution to GDP could approach 40%. The PM will also be cheering for Fiji at the 25th anniversary of the Hong Kong Sevens tournament. -- Based on No.0731/MOI.
[Fiji was beaten by NZ 19-14 in the semi-finals, having come from 14 down. Cama and Raikabula were part of the winning NZ team that beat England to win the Cup so there was a Fiji presence at the end.]