NZ Unionist Questions McCully's Judgement

NZCTU Secretary Peter Conway is reported  by Radio NZ International and Pacific Media Watch to have  challenged Foreign Minister McCully's assurance that  good progress is being made towards holding elections. Conway said that McCully allowed the Fiji regime to "keep masquerading that the election is free and fair".

Conroy then repeated accusations previously made by a PMW student journalist, that in turn had been previously made in the Fiji on line media, about the CCF booklet, Ratu Timoci's "hate" speech, the Fiji Law Society's complaint about monitoring communications in the 48 hours before Election day (he called it putting "its citizens under surveillance") and "attached draconian conditions to trade unionists who want to stand as independent candidates in the election."

Each of these issues has been addressed in this blog. Action on the CCF booklet seemed justifiable. It did include misleading statements. I thought there was an over-reaction on the "hate" speech and it could be the MIDA chairman acted prior to due process , but the last two —the supposed surveillance and the restrictions on independent candidates— are  non issues and election engineering eyewash. Whether trade union official should be able to stand as election candidates without first resigning their union position is another issue but this has nothing to do with the issue of independent candidates.  The Supervisor of Elections says  no one has sought registration as an independent candidate.

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