Political Round Up Friday 13 June

The early part of the week saw further  sniping at the Judiciary.  The Opposition persists with accusations that the judiciary is not independent of Government, although it has yet to produce a single piece of evidence to support its claims —and it never notes when judgements go against Government.

Then, the blogs claim senior judges have resigned and are fleeing the country before they are held responsible for supporting the Bainimarama government. And, again they never publish denials  by the judges.  

Similar accusations were levelled at USP over the cancellation of a student's scholarship when it should have been obvious that the decision was that of the Scholarship Board acting on advice  from USP's Student Advisory Services. But not so writes someone as a comment on this blog: "USP VC Rajesh Chandra and deputy Esther Williams are responsible for this debacle... they are only too happy to follow directions from Khaiyum."  

And so we follow the countdown to the elections.  Lots of accusations, no evidence, and little concrete on new or alternative policies. Then, on Thursday we heard from PM Bainimarama and Dr  Prasad. Accusations were made by both, but neither stooped to personalities. Both dealt with differences and rebuttals on policies.  Good on them!

Here are the main news items since Wednesday ....

FIJIFIRST LAUNCH. The FF party was launched at the party’s office in Brown Street, Suva, on Friday afternoon.  Its advertisement for people wishing to stand as FF candidates says they must embrace the core values laid out in the FijiFirst Constitution which include integrity, a commitment to the Fiji Constitution, inclusiveness, self-reliance and opportunity for all Fijians. Other attributes listed were reliability, honesty and trust, unity, loyalty. discipline. Wow!  The political movement [why don't they call themselves a party?] is also calling for volunteers to join the campaign. Written applications can be sent to the FijiFirst office or through its website. http://fijifirst.com/    This is a link to what Bainimarama said at the opening ceremony

NFP PROMISES.  This is a link to FijiLive's report on Dr Prasad address to Rotary  on Thurday.

SODELPA CANDIDATES.  The names will be announced tomorrow, Saturday.

USP RESPONDS. Click here for the university's statement on the cancellation of the scholarship of Seruiraduvatu Tamanirarama, the student who volunteered to help Independent candidate, Roshika Deo.

541 CONSUMER COMPLAINTS, valued at $1.2 million,  have been received by the Consumer Council in the first five months of this year  Mobile phones, electronic goods and landlord-tenancy related issues topped the list of complaints received by the Consumer Council that has resolved 85%  of the complaints.

1) The announcement that the  Commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Force, Brigadier-General Mosese Tikoitoga and  RFMF chief of staff, Brigadier-General Mohammed Aziz have set up office in downtown Suva, while also keeping their offices at the Nabua barracks in the outskirts of Suva city, will almost certainly be viewed with suspicion by those opposed to the Bainimarama government, and the Commander's statement  said his new office was in a location where he could easily carry out his work will definitely raise eyebrows. Click here .
2) Fiji's Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem has confirmed that public Service and private vehicles can be used by political parties for their campaigns. Only public structures which include buildings, electricity posts and monuments needed approval from the Fijian Elections Office to be used. The FEO has so far named 92 "places"  that can be used for campaigning. Click here. [I think the clarification comes after complaints  about the FijiFirst Party bus with logos on its sides, but I am surprised public service vehicles can be used in the campaign.]

ILLEGAL LAND DEVELOPMENT EXPOSED. FLP'S  Mahendra Chaudhry  has raised concerns about the possible abuse by a foreign developer of a Suva site at Sawau Rd in Bayview Heights, currently zoned for civic development, probably being developed for commercial purposes. Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry has written to  the Director of Lands for clarification. "A visit disclosed that substantial structures are being constructed on the subject land," he wrote.  Suva City Council has confirmed that approval had not been granted for the building and engineering plans submitted by the company for the construction work being carried out.  The ongoing work is therefore illegal. Comment.  Brownie points to Mahen. But I hope his interest is apolitical. The SCC has prime responsibility here. Not the Government.

HICKUPS WITH ROTUMA-TUVALU TRADE. Government attempts to provide cash incomes on the northern island of Rotuma (improved shipping,  jetty improvements, freezers, quarantine facilities) have been temporarily put on hold because the islanders have been unable  to meet Tuvalu demand.
Rotuma Island Council advisor, Major General George Konrote admits there are some issues with the trade deal. “I believe there are brighter days ahead as you’ve heard the Prime Minister – we are now ironing out the shipping problems, the storage problems. I have no doubt following more dialogue and discussion with the government of Tuvalu things will improve.” Meanwhile, Tuvalu is importing directly  from Suva.

BLOG COMMENT OF THE WEEK. "I am a "I-Taukei" and a very proud one at that who has had a "gut-full" of our inability to debate in such a forum without resorting to name calling when people disagree with someone else's opinion.

"Rather than trying to swap their perception through constructive well structured arguments backed by concrete evidence, we start "mud-slinging" mate. You just have to go to anti-coup blogs to see this sort of immature behavior. Whilst I agree with them on principles, I loathe the way we talk to each other online. It's so so sad."

TO CHEER YOU UP, TWO JOKES.  Why is a person who plays the piano called a pianist, but a person who drives a  racecar is not called a racist?

If lawyers are disbarred and clergymen  defrocked, then doesn't it follow that  electricians can be delighted, musicians  denoted, cowboys deranged, models deposed,  tree surgeons debarked, and dry cleaners  depressed?


Passing the buck at USP said...

USP's excuse that the scholarship was removed for missing a field trip is laughable. No one's scholarship has been taken away for missing a field trip. This is an example of how USP VC Rajesh Chandra makes the rules as he goes along. Then, when the shit hit the fan, Rajesh Chandra conveniently passes the buck to USP's Student Advisory Services.

The fact is that USP Student Advisory has never made such a decision before. It would never dare to trample on students' rights in this manner unless the order came from the top.

Anonymous said...

Other people have parties, Croz. Fiji First is too serious for parties. It is embarked on a mission to make Fiji Great. There is no time for partying. It is a national movement to take the country forward so movement it is.

Anonymous said...

The Opposition persists with accusations that the judiciary is not independent of Government, although it has yet to produce a single piece of evidence to support its claims —and it never notes when judgements go against Government.

Who exactly would they present this evidence to if their claims are right.

Marshall's affidavit has been conveniently forgotten.

Of the decisions that have gone against government, which ones are you referring to? What impact have they had on the key players.

There is no separation of powers. The AG controls the courts. That is fact. The evidence will be produced when this regime are not in a position to ignore it or destroy it. Some of it may even play out in foreign courts.

When the curtain comes down on this regime it will make the Fiji holdings saga pale into insignificance. Those who have supported this regime despite overwhelming evidence of their corruption and error will be looking foolish.

This regime is a coup regime. They displaced the rule of law and democracy. Their legal argument for justification failed miserably. SDL may have been manipulating the game. The illegal regime have done far worse.

We will never know the true income and assets of the illegal PM and AG.
We will never know the income and assets of the illegal Chief Justice and Shameem.
We will never know of the graft and corrupt dealing with foreign investors since 2006.

No argument can be put forward to justify this diabolical situation the Country is in. That was tried and failed.

Croz. If you think the 2009 Court of Appeal judges were corrupt or decided incorrectly lets see your evidence. Lets go back to basics.

The illegal PM said he would return to barracks and install a caretaker government if the 2009 decision went against him. It was a spectacular backflip. Why? Who advised him to do otherwise?

Who would place themselves above the law of the land? Those who are so self-righteous that they can justify an unlawful military takeover. That is the basic truth. We need to restore the position of 2009 and go from there or Fiji will always be held by a "might is right" mentality.

No immunity for treason said...

Not only do the thugs with guns and the cowards standing behind them rape the nation, steal it's assets and impose a sham constitution which gives them immunity for their crimes, but they now want 'evidence' that they have done anything wrong? It is, like the sham elections under a repressive human rights abusing regime and its corrupted justice system, a total and utter farce.
it is going to take Fiji a long, long time to clean up this stinking mess.

Crosbie Walsh said...

Pure supposition on your part to match your personal views on Rajesh Chandra, a person you obviously do not like.. I think you are wrong.

Crosbie Walsh said...

Anonymous, You raIse too many issues for a brief reply but most of the points you raise have already been discussed in previous postings, dating back for more than a year. You should note, however, that judges apply the law (whether it is "good" or "bad"); they do not make it. I have seen no evidence that they have done otherwise.

On Qarase's appeal and the Australian judges decision, I was surprised they announced their judgement so quickly.One would have thought more than one day would be needed. One of my informants, within inside information, claimed the judgement was a foregone conclusion and written up as the case proceeded. I am in no position to verify this possibility..

Crosbie Walsh said...

No immunity for treason...You do not need to raise the same issues over and over again every few days. You have made your point and only need to say it once. More than this is like advertising. .

Anonymous said...

The only 'advertising' (and deceitful 'advertising' at that) is people like you trying to sell a human rights abusing cowardly dictator as some sort of legitimate politician. If the Fijian dictator is a politician of any substance why did he have to take over the government by force and then in collusion with a corrupted junta appointed judiciary set about intimidating, bashing and destroying any real opposition? This dictator will win his election under a sham constitution. He has set the precedent that coups are ok and a legitimate tool of power grabbing in Fiji. There is no doubt whatsoever that their will be another coup in the future. What goes around comes around. This farce is a long way from being over.

Anonymous said...

Pure supposition on your part to match your personal views of Chandra, an illegal junta supporter you obviously like. I think you are wrong.

Marc Edge said...

a sign of how you are behind the times . . . Friday is June 13 . . . another sign of how you are behind the times

Dictator inadvertently endorses Fiji Times


Anonymous said...

Thanks again Croz for your balanced, fair and accurate reporting. Those who call our beloved PM a dictator should be dealt with in earnest. How can a man who has the support of more than 90% of the population be a dictator? Did Qarase have such level of support? No he did not. All the hoo-haa about human rights abuses, stealing of government funds and not declaring assets and income are just mischievous attempts to snipe at the best leader Fiji has ever had. He has promised that no RFMF soldier will ever benefit from the coup and has delivered, he has promised elections in 2009 and the Australians have sabotaged his plans. He has promised to hold free and fait elections under an independent minister for elections and he will deliver. So it is time for the opposition to shut up and support our beloved Rear Admiral.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely spot on! The opposition's claims that everything in the election is biased against them is pure propaganda without any base whatsoever. We have a completely independent election commission, the media is providing ample space for even outrageous opposition stories, and the constant whinging of the opposition that officials of the Fiji First Movement did not declare assets and income just shows that these ignorant thugs can't even read the law. The electoral decree clearly says that PARTY officials need to declare assets. It never mentioned that MOVEMENT officials have to do so. So there is no bias here, our PM and his AG just follow the law as it was written and accepted by a vast majority of the population!

Anonymous said...

Get back to your hole Marc Edge. Leave Fiji's issues to us Fijians to solve.

Marc Edge said...

I'm glad to see that you at least fixed the date. . . . Typical incompetence.