Showing posts from February 5, 2012

Weekend Readings

• CCF on State Proceedings Decree 
• PM Stops Namosi Mining Exploration  •Allen Lockington Column 
• Those  Mysterious Tourist Deaths • Bottled Venom:the Politics of Hate by Graham Davis.

CCF Says State Proceeding Decree Unwarranted, Drafted Without Due Process adn Discriminatory.

Media Release
10th February, 2012

Unwarranted State and Media Protection Decree Discriminates

The Citizens’ Constitutional Forum (CCF) notes that to garner confidence in the current regime, it must desist from ruling by decrees especially if they are determined and drafted without any real due process involving the views of the people and more importantly if they discriminate against the citizens.

PM Halts Namosi Mine Exploration Work

COVER REPORT: Rumblings in the mountain :PM Bainimarama intervenes, halts exploration Samisoni Pareti

Concerned about growing landowners’ agitation against the proposed billion-dollar copper and gold mine high up in the Namosi-Naitasiri mountains, Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama has ordered a halt to the miner’s exploration work.

Lockington's Everyday Fiji ... Life Goes On

Allen Lockington is a self-employed customs agent and business consultant who has regular articles published in Fiji. I thank Allen for permission to reprint some of them in this political blog. They remind us that life goes on, whatever the political situation. And it's good to know that.
Weather forecast spot on
Last week at the height of the bad weather we got three predictions that it would rain again after 24 to 36 hours. They were spot on. Thank you to the Fiji Met office and Nadraki Fiji Limited managing director Neville Koop.  
It is fortunate that we now have better weather forecasters. We will be better prepared. Or rather – we should be better prepared. I was travelling with a group of volunteers distributing rations to people affected by the floods when we spotted a convoy of four-wheel drives.
We were told that it was the president and government officials out and about checking homes and speaking to the people. They were also assessing damage. At one village it …

Those "Mysterious" Tourist Deaths

My thanks to Lesley for this well documented exposure of the NZ media on this one issue. Unfortunately, experience shows that their handling of other Fji issues is rarely any  better. Four years ago I thought our media were fair and reasonably balanced. I now know better, and find myself questioning the reliability of most of their stories. Check out what the media reported

Bottled Venom: The Politics of Hate by Graham Davis

Graham Davis – February 7, 2012Posted in: All
Not so veiled racism Most countries have laws that prevent religious and racial vilification. Most responsible media outlets – including those on the internet – excise comments designed to inflame religious and racial hatred. But sadly not the most prominent of the websites set up to oppose the government of Fiji’s prime minister, Frank Bainimarama.
That site calls itself Coup Four and a Half – otherwise known as 4.5 – and is supposedly run by journalists. Its name denotes the four coups in Fiji’s post independence history -the two Rabuka coups in 1987, the Speight coup in 2000, the Bainimarama coup in 2006 plus what 4.5 regards as the half coup when Bainimarama’s takeover was declared illegal by the courts in 2009 and he abrogated the constitution altogether, sacked the judiciary and continued to govern by decree.
Now, Coup 4.5 is entitled to oppose the dictatorship, though many Fijians prefer it to the …

Details of Constitutional Processes at End of Month

Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, who is currently touring flood affected areas in Fiji, will provide details regarding the timeframe and methodology of the country’s constitutional consultation process, as well as the composition of a Constitutional Commission, in the fourth week of February.

News and Comments Thursday 9 February 2012

9.2.12   FLP also opposes new decree.Click here.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK.  "Most of you commenting here [on Facebook] on our Native Fijian tradition and culture (and anything else on Fiji) should also know your place, you are vulagi's (visitors). We have been kind enough to allow you to leave (live) in Fiji with freedom even to the extend of giving you the vulagis the compulsory to learn Native Fijian as they do in most highly intellectual countries where speaking their the native language is compulsory."

THE STATE PROCEEDINGS AMENDMENT DECREE.The announcement of this decree seems to have raised more questions than answers.  The anti-blogs, Pacific Freedom Forum and several readers of this blog see it as an infringement of media freedom and some Suva journalists are clearly not sure what to make of it. The Fiji Government says it will help open dialogue.  Radio NZInternational, however, see it as "unbalancing the playing field before the elections." They cite a Dr Mark…

Decree Restores Equivalent of Parlimentary Privilege

Subject: Media Release: Government Restores Level Playing Field and Protects Media Outlets
The President has approved the State Proceedings (Amendment) Decree 2012, which provides that no media organization can be held liable for publication of statements, whether verbal or written, made by the Prime Minister or any Minister of Government, whether in their official or personal capacity. The Decree is consistent with the Parliamentary privilege as was applicable in Fiji and which is applicable in countries throughout the Commonwealth; however, it goes further by protecting media organizations.
The law is intended to facilitate open and frank discussion between Government, the public and other stakeholders in the lead up to Fiji's Parliamentary elections. The Decree will expire upon the date when a new Parliament is convened which will have its usual privileges for statements made by Parliamentarians.
Source: Ministry of  Information. (My emphasis).

UN Assessment Team for 2014 Elections

Republic of Fiji Welcomes UN Needs Assessment Mission for Upcoming Elections
The Fijian Government today accepted an offer from the United Nations to send a Needs Assessment Mission (NAM) to Fiji ahead of the planned Parliamentary elections.
Fijian Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum stipulated that the composition of the mission must be politically neutral and unbiased with regard to Fiji, so it can provide an objective technical needs assessment for Fiji to conduct free and fair elections.
The NAM, which will be conducted by the Electoral Assistance Division of the UN Secretariat in New York, is slated to take place in early March. It will provide technical assessment of Fiji’s needs, such as ballot boxes, staffing and logistical preparation, among other considerations.
The move follows the Fijian Government’s recent selection of the Canadian firm CODE Inc. as Fiji’s vendor for electronic voter registration (EVR).
Fiji continues to follow the recommendations of the E…

PM’s on Prophet Muhammad’s Birthday and Coup4.5 on Muslims

Read the PM's address by clicking the heading  above and then run your eye over this incredible posting by Coup 4.5.  Where do these people get such cranky ideas? If they are still playing the race-religion card against Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, they should get a more educated person to write their script. I suggest you read each phrase carefully. I've added some comments in square brackets.

"Fiji is going through a false scenario of reforms and modernization to have a new Fiji. This was reiterated by the PM in his address during the November 2012 budget. Sadly it is bound to end up with civilization with darkness.[Uh?]

"The truth is Muslims, through Aiyaz Sayed Kaiyum, is colonizing Fiji. They are deceiving the people of Fiji using nice phrases and words such as modernization, a new Fiji without corruption, transparency, fairness to justify their staying in power. [Are these not desirable concepts?] Look at what has been happening:
Muslim riding hard on power (RFMF) [Ther…

Internal Discussions on the Constitution Must Start Now

Constitutional Awareness meetings have already commenced with meetings in the Suva-Nausori Corridor. The purpose of these village and settlement meetings seems to be to talk about what a constitution is, how important it is,  and the process for creating a constitution.  This CCF release concerns the promised "dialogue" that is due to start soon, probably towards the end of the month or early next.  I hope overseas politicians and media will keep closely tuned to the process as it unfolds.

Temm: Go, See For Yourself

The standoff, if it can be called that,  between Jonathan Temm of the NZ Law Society and the Fiji judiciary raises a number of important issues.  Temm claims the Fiji judiciary is not independent of political interference and  judicial procedures and decisions are therefore tainted.

This position has some  credence because there have certainly been instances when the Fiji government has brought cases before the Courts on tenuous grounds, where it arguably sought delays in proceedings  and where it tried to influence court outcomes.

But —and this is a very important but— in all cases it failed. The Courts dismissed the tenous claims; admonished prosecutors for being unprepared and delaying proceedings, and there was no influence on the Court decisions, several going against the Bainimarama Government.

Most court cases in Fiji are non-political. Lawyers, magistrates and judges are mostly needed for civil cases.  Without them,  innocent people will be deprived of justice, and the guilty…