News and Comments Monday 19 November 2012

MY INTERVIEW WITH THE PM.  See previous posting.

LEGAL AID. The PM will be opening two new legal aid offices, in Nadi and Rakiraki, this week. I was especially impressed by the work of this office which offers free legal services to people with annual incomes of under$15,000 (that's at least half the population) when I was in Fiji recently and will be publishing a full report on their work in the coming weeks.

BUDGET WEEK. The PM will announce the 2013 Budget this Thursday 22 November.

MAHOGANY MISMANAGED. It is claimed Fiji's mahogany resource was grossly mismanaged for many years and what existed could barely be described as an industry at all, it was so fragmented and lacking in cohesion.

Speaking at the inaugural meeting of the Mahogany Industry Council in Suva last week, the PM said the process of felling trees was done with no real objective for value adding and the harvesting did not produce long-term sustained benefits for the people.

He said majority of the mahogany, including sawn timber, was exported in a very rudimentary form and there was no organised programme for reforestation."The whole business conducted through Fiji Hardwood Corporation Limited and those who participated in it was prone to corruption, in the forest, in the sawmill and in the offices,"

He said FHCL, the holder of the mahogany leases, was haemorrhaging financially and both the nation and ordinary Fijians were being deprived of a suitable return and the non-realisation of the full potential of this most precious resource. "There was inefficiency, lack of knowledge and antiquated and outmoded systems."

POLICE CHIEF SAYS LAXITY RUINING IMAGE. Chief Operations Officer ACP Rusiate Tudravu  says the police image and its achievements are being ruined due to the laxity of some officers. He made this remark when announcing the investigation into the escape of three remanded prisoners from Nadi Police Station has been completed.“We are not making any excuses for what happened. On one hand we are trying to build the professional image of the Force, however due to the laxity of some of our very own officers, we are letting our guard down and ruining all that has been achieved," ACP Tuidravu said, The three remanded prisoners escaped earlier in the week and have been on the run since. ACP Tudravu said they have investigated how the three managed to escape from the cell block as well as established the number of officers on duty. “If investigations prove the fault of the officers on duty or even their superiors, it will be the prerogative of the Commissioner on what action he is to take,” he said. He said the incidents tarnish the professional image the force is trying to build. A similar investigation is being done in Suva where a remand prisoner escaped while being escorted to the Legal Aid Office. A team of 35 officers are helping in the search in the Western Division with another team deployed from Suva for reinforcement. Check points have been erected as well.

TRAINING FOR UNEMPLOYED WOMEN. Unemployed women living in Suva's Public Rental board flats will soon be provided with skills training following a memorandum of understanding which was signed between PRB and the Young Women’s Christian association. Some 1,347 families are expected to benefit.
The training will be provided in areas identified by the YWCA which will become a source of income generation for the unemployed women. PRB General Manager, Mesake Senibulu hopes the  training skills will ultimately result in the reduction of rental arrears as well improving the living standards of the PRB families.

THE NEW MINISTER FOR AGRICULTURE, Fisheries and Forests is  LtCol Inia Batikoto Seruiratu who was previously the permanent secretary of Provincial Development and National Disaster Management.Seruiratu said this portfolio is not new to him as he was a former Commissioner Northern and one of the things he is going to do is see that the resources are fully utilized.

LAU: REPLACING SENILE COCONUTS. The 13 districts of Lau  have been given a quota to plant 3,000 new coconut trees, preferably of the niu magimagi variety for which there is a huge demand in the coconut industry.The Department of Agriculture will pay farmers 36 cents per coconut seedling they plant. Coconuts and copra are the major economic activity in many parts of the Lau Group.


wati s said…
so for all the complaints about how bad things were under Qarase and Chaudry, this regime has had six long years, a religious crusade and lots and lots of lecturing to address the shortcomings of the police and still they moan?? exactly who are they complaining to? Or should I not be dwelling on this and be looking to the future?!
Anonymous said…
another colonel for the 'government'? wait for it.....'best man for the job i expect'...what is the count now for military taking government and public service positions?? what no more sri lankans? How many indians, how many women??
Shazzer Grubby said…
You did not take up my offer to remove you from the mailing list so I suppose you wish to continue to receive Shazzer's emails despte them becoming repetitive.

Anyway You told me to be more positive and help to move the country forward.. So please give me a positive story that I can include in the next email.

Hugs and Kisses

Ram Sami said…
Who is this Shazzer Grubby ??

Some grub who is past it and gets gratification by advertising his stupidity on the net ??
Ms Gobbles fan club said…
Wonderful stuff shazza. Any updates on the dictator's trip to Fiji for some dribbling and public spanking?
Shazzer Grubby said…
@Ram Sami
As my twitter desription reads "Shazzer is a vivacious red head with a huge mouth and has strong views on Fiji"

I am deeply upset you think I am past it. I drank Crazy under the table when we had some drinks at the Holiday Inn. then I went to Traps to hook up with Grubby.

There's still a lot of life left in this old girl.
The Wild Colonial Boy said…
It is a massive reform in any jurisdiction when legal access is afforded to those at the lower end of the socio economic scale. This is clear evidence that the Prime Minister is serious about equity and access.

Some of the comments above are inane. I enjoy the ramblings of Shazzer Grubby for the penmanship. However, it is clear that this individual is a bitter and twisted soul.

In Aus, we would love to have a benevolent leader, instead of the corporate lackies who are selling us out.

Joni Mitchell said it best, ... you don't know what you got til it's gone.
%$#@! said…
'massive reform in any jurisdiction when legal access is afforded to those at the lower end of the socio economic scale!? yes but everyone is still unable to seek redress from the regime through any court ...yeah true progress. No appeals against the regime, nothing but a law unto themselves, what a pack of hypocrates.What are so afrid of, they did appoint all the 'contract judges' after all? These are the same junta that are dictating the accountabilities for the NEXT government but apply none of those same standards to themselves, another reform too?
Anonymous said…
@The Wild...reform?, that would be by a military regime that has no mandate to change anything and that does not even hold itself accountable to it's own people and they have the gall to demand amnesty for all they have done.

If it has been so popular, with such overwhelming support, why would they need amnesty? The police can't even get paper or vehicles, what eactly is the legal access going to provide them?? So crime is going up, rapidly but never mind we'll get you a lawyer. Does that make sense to anyone?
rusi said…
The military appointed PM is quoted in Fijilive as bemoaning 'inefficiency, mismanagement & corruption in the Dept of National Roads', but i can assume after his own six years in power, he will still be blaming ther Qarase years for this? Or will he be expecting us all to 'look to the future in 2014' and not apportioning blame to the those in power, like he and Croz are so keen to do when others were in government.
Crosbie Walsh said…
Please remove me from the mailing list.
The Wild Colonial Boy said…
I agree in part with what %#$ and annon. say. It is a good start but you are both right. The problem at the moment is that the acting Chief Registrar controls the magistrates (by making them get admitted as legal practitioners, thereby giving him the right to fire any magistrate at will). Further, the acting Chief Registrar, Mr Saneem, controls the magistrate's court lists. Any criminal matter is therby controlled by Mr Saneem. The results are therefor contrived by him under the direction of others. This is due to certain pieces of legislation. I am sure that the PM will make sure these decrees are amended to give full effect to his justice reforms.

It is a good start. That is my point. There is a long way to go before judicial independence is restored. I take the point of those above who criticised my posting. Be patient. Justice is coming. Those who the PM trusts, who are seeking to undermine him, will be exposed in due course.

The military are the shining lights of Fiji. It is just a sad state of affairs that they have been "lent" to people like the acting Chief Registrar and those who direct him, to asist in the removal of any judicial officer or public servant who shows the slightest modicum of independence and integrity.

The PM has built the car body. It remains to be seen if the car is given a motor. Thank you to you and annon. for responding to my post. I am glad you see behind the veil. I am sure the PM will see through the "legal trickery"that has been implemented by the people in whom he has placed his trust.
The Wild Colonial Boy said…
I have responded to your post above. Thank you for responding to my post. Please be patient. JUSTICE WILL COME TO FIJI SOON
Shazzer Grubby said…
No Problem. But please what about giving me a positive subject to include in the next email. Anything you like. If you don't make a suggestion people will think you can't come up with a positive.

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