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Showing posts from June 29, 2014

Political Round Up Saturday 5 July

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Salaries - campaigns - manifestos - accusations of racism Land warning - wooing the elderly - new parties - corruption - after the elections  Latest political poll - political will to make things happen The most interesting news of the week was the required declaration of the PM's salary, his assets and liabilities, and those of other FijiFirst officials. I will wait a little for reactions before writing anything myself, but already SODELPA general secretary Pio Tabaiwalu has said the declaration "needs some scrutiny" and Mahendra Chaudhry has claimed it was "substantially reduced" on what the PM was receiving in April 2010, but how he knew we do not know.  What we do know, however, is that MC's assets must be "substantial" if he could pay his recent fine of $2 million. He declared them as $3.2 million.  Not bad for a labour party leader.

FFP will start its election campaign in the coming week, though some would claim its started a long time ago w…

Re-Engaging the Judiciary

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An Address by the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mr Christopher Pryde, for the Fiji – New Zealand Business Council Conference – 28 June 2014 at the Grand Pacific Hotel, Suva.

The Honorary Consul for Fiji, Mr Richard Hatherly;
The Permanent Secretary for Industry and Trade, Mr Shaheen Ali; The Acting Head of Mission for New Zealand, Mr Mark Ramsden; The President of the Fiji NZ Business Council Mr Ngamoki-Cameron; The President of the NZ Fiji Business Council, Mr Chandar Sen; Members of the Fiji – New Zealand business community;
Distinguished Guests;
Ladies and Gentlemen

First, let me thank the President and the Executive Committee of the Fiji/NZ Business Council for inviting me to speak to you this morning.

I want to begin by saying something in general terms about the criminal justice system and the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. I then want to say something about how the decision to prosecute is made with particular reference to the Chaudhry and Driti cases, and th…

News and Comments Friday 4 July

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MY RECENT FIJI SUN ARTICLES: A CLARIFICATION. I do not submit my articles to the Fiji Sun.  But it has my permission to publish them so long as I am informed and they are not edited. I extended a similar invitation to the Fiji Times, who thanked me and said they had their own senior reporters. I trust Hank and Wesley know the offer still stands.

ANYTHING FOR A STORY. Fairfax Media is up to it again, upholding its right to media freedom. This time it claims Bainimarama had told them a EU Commissioner had offered him 500 million Euros in aid if he held elections. Bainimarama is reported to have replied: “You think Fiji is like some African Country, and every time we have a coup, you just give us money? I nearly hit him over the head with a bottle of Fiji Water.”The EU Delegation in Fiji is unaware of the supposed offer.

STOP SPREADING FEAR ABOUT LAND TO WIN VOTES. The Citizens' Constitutional Forum is calling on all politicians to engage in dialogue to address the concerns of some Tau…

Lockington's Everyday Fiji ... Life Goes On

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         Good Drivers

Mini bus and bus drivers have featured in the news again for the wrong reasons, and I'm sure all drivers feel tainted. It's a human thing that when one makes a mistake, all the rest are included.

Here's a nicer story.  My wife was on her way from Nadi to Lautoka on a mini bus and at the Lomolomo stretch they saw a car with the hood opened and a person standing beside it. As they drove up cars in front just drove on with the driver standing there looking desperate.

Well, lo and behold, the mini bus stopped and the driver turned to his passengers and said that he was going to assist the broken down car. Some of the passengers grunted disapproval and some were taken by surprise others got off and went with the driver.

In ten minutes the mini bus driver had found the fault and started the car. The driver was so thankful he offered some money but the mini bus driver said, "No thanks", he said, "someday you will help someone,."

He got on…

News and Comments Wednesday 2 July

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IF YOU DON'T BELIEVE ENOUGH IS BEING DONE ABOUT VOTER EDUCATION, CHECK OUT THESE PHOTOS.    Click on text for the link and then the right arrows to see more photos.

PM WAXES LOUD AND CLEAR AT LAMI TELECENTRE LAUNCH. The PM opened the country's 24th telecentre, at Lami High School, on Tuesday, and didn't lose the opportunity to make an appeal for votes:

"As I travel around the country speaking with ordinary people", he said, "one of the things that I hear most often is the complaint that in the past politicians would make all sorts of promises but would fail to keep them.

"Breaking this shameful practice has been one of my proudest accomplishments as your Prime Minister. Since day one, my Government has always been more interested in delivering results than making promises. This Telecentre is proof of that commitment."

 "The bottom line is that Fijians know when they are being empowered, when they are finally getting the services they deserve - re…

A Speech that Tells Us All

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STOP PRESS. A SAD LOSS.The late Archbishop Emeritus Petero Mataca (81) passed away on Monday after a long illness. He will be remembered for his contribution to the development of the country and religion. 
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Ro Teimumu's address to SODELPA's AGM at the weekend should inform voters about the party's priorities and intentions. 

It was a long speech, some 3,800-odd words, of which most (nearly 70%) was about how the Bainimarama government was threatening to take away Taukei land.

Of the other topics, “the shocking spread of poverty and unemployment, the decline of government services and infrastructure and the crippling cost of living” far less was said. 

She had 28 words on unemployment, 83 on health (half of which was about the Navau woman who unfortunately lost her baby), 25 words on the economic damage caused by the Bainimarama government and wage stagnation, and three words about the spread of poverty. Government's L…