Archive for the ‘trampling of basic rights in Fiji’ Category

Can Bainimarama compromise?

August 12, 2013

The Fiji Sugar and General Workers Union has announced that their vote on the proposed strike has been verified by the Labour Ministry. The ball is now in the court of the regime to work out how they will respond. Union leader, Felix Anthony, has invited the regime to sit down and look at mediation but FSC has so far refused. Bainimarama doesn’t want anyone to think he can take orders from anyone. He thinks if he compromises once he will be expected to compromise again. It’s always “MY way or the highway”. He’s given hints that the army would step in to run the mills if the strike goes ahead. He doesn’t seem to understand what a disaster this would be. An industrial accident put the Lautoka mill out of action for two weeks. The last thing we need is a couple more of these.

Radio Fiji Aug 11, 2013 Secret ballot verified – FSGWU
http://www.fbc.com.fj/fiji/12777/secret-ballot-verified—fsgwu

Is the regime still the “lesser of two evils”

August 12, 2013

Despite his past services to the regime, CCF Chief Executive Officer, Reverend Akuila Yabaki, has been hit hard by Judge Calanchini. He has been hit with a fine of $20,000 and he and CCF have been ordered to pay $5000 direct to Khaiyum’s own office. This judgement shows what a hypocrite Khaiyum is. He was elected by nobody, his decrees have not been passed by any Parliament, and all judges have been hand-picked by him and subject to sacking if they do not do what he says. The suspended prison sentence means that one more comment from Yabaki and he will go straight to prison. For years Akuila Yabaki gave the regime the benefit of the doubt, making all sorts of excuses for their oppression of others, now he’s enjoying a taste of what it feels like. FDN wonders if it still feels like the “lesser of two evils” and more like pure evil.

Fiji Village: 10/08/2013 CCF and Yabaki convicted and fined

Mills on track for disaster

July 30, 2013

The military and police were on hand when sugar workers voted to go on strike. Over two thirds of workers turned out to vote and 90% of them voted to strike. It’s obvious they’re angry with the contempt they’ve been treated with for years. Khaiyum has come out immediately to say that one way or the other the mills will be kept going. If this is a threat to have the army take over running the mill, it sounds like a recipe for disaster. The Lautoka mill is currently closed due to an accident. Does Khaiyum want to see all the mills suffer the same fate? This would be a disater from which our sugar industry would never recover.
Radio Australia 29 July 2013, Fiji sugar workers vote to strike despite ‘intimidation’

Radio New Zealand 29 July, 2013 Fiji’s AG pleads to sugar workers not to strike
http://www.rnzi.com/pages/news.php?op=read&id=77907

The Village ByLaws

July 27, 2013

Shamima Ali, Director of the Fiji Women’s Crisis Centre (FWCC) has labelled the grog ban imposed on some women in Cakaudrove as discriminatory. She says Bylaws that impose this ban are discriminatory. The problem is that these Bylaws have no legal basis. Bainimarama has gone to village after village promising that they can have their bylaws, but Khaiyum has refused to make them legal. The sun has set on them as far as he’s concerned. What a mess.

Fiji Times July 25, 2013 Ali: Grog ban discriminatory
http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=240711

Fiji Times February 12, 2013 iTaukei Affairs: Village bylaws not legally binding
http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=224974

FICAC changes its tune again

July 19, 2013

Once again FICAC has changed the charges in one of its long-running cases. The rumours that these charges were based on circulated for years when we had a professional police force under a professional police Commissioner but no action was taken because they were all lies. It took the regime 2 years to lay charges and now 4 years later they’re changing the charges. Charges against Laisenia Qarase were dropped so it looks like charges against Dakuidreketi and Bakani are being changed to give the case another lease of life. All the did as directors of the NLTB was to approve its investment in a computer program to manage land properly, in particular, ensure lease monies were paid on time.

Fiji Times, 19 July 2013 FICAC seeks amendment to charges
http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=240109

Will the sugar workers strike?

July 18, 2013

Felix Anthony has thrown down the gauntlet to the regime by threatening a sugar workers strike. He says they haven’t had a pay rise for seven years. The question now is will Khaiyum push Bainimarama to invoke the Essential National Industries (Employment) Decree to crush the plans for a strike? There’s no doubt a strike would be a national disaster, but the use of the much hated decree could also be a disaster. The international reaction would be swift and could include sanctions by the USA to deny duty free entry to our products. Look out Fiji Water.

Fiji Live July 17, 2013 Sugar workers plan strike action
http://www.fijilive.com/news/2013/07/sugar-workers-plan-strike-action/54489.Fijilive

Khaiyum trying to cover his high-handed actions

July 17, 2013

Every day my control grows stronger

Khaiyum has claimed that there are serious complaints in relation to the conduct of sacked Special Administrator for Sigatoka and Nadi, Aisea Tuidraki and sacked CEO of the Nadi Town Council, Nemia Tagi. Khaiyum claims these allegations include allegations of favouritism in the allocation of jobs and contracts. FICAC can’t even say they’re investigating the men. The fact is they were sacked by Khaiyum without due process. The Minister responsible for their positions resigned after he was by-passed by this irregular process.

Fiji Village: 16/07/2013 Investigations continue on Tuidraki and Tagi
http://www.fijivillage.com/?mod=story&id=160713d0fa9574c7ab6683d4e3713c

Arun Prasad’s real crime

July 17, 2013

Sacked Ba Special Administrator Arun Prasad is denying allegations that he obtained waivers and discounts for properties owned by him and his family. These rumours emerged after Khaiyum sacked him for his alleged bullying of squatters who were asked to co-operate in putting a road into a new sub-division which would provide housing for them. Khaiyum is keen to present himself as the champion of the poor but more than that he’s trying to make it look as though it’s quite natural for him to be sacking Special Administrators without proper process. He knows there is simmering anger over his treatment of Special Administrator for Sigatoka and Nadi, Aisea Tuidraki and sacked CEO of the Nadi Town Council, Nemia Tagi.

Radio Fiji 16 July 2013 Sacked special administrator denies allegations
http://www.fbc.com.fj/fiji/12052/sacked-special-administrator-denies-allegations

Another beating means another cover-up

July 15, 2013

Yet again, the Bainikhaiyum security forces have been caught in the act of breaking the law. They stopped a vehicle carrying people preparing for a funeral and assaulted the occupants without any lawful reason. One of the victims recognised one of the thugs as a member of the military and others witnessed the crime. The one thing we can be sure of is that these men will not be punished for their crime. The regime can’t claim these men had it coming to them, like Benedito, but the thugs will escape punishment. The regime will try to buy the victims off and get a picture of them smiling while accepting an apology. If that fails there’ll be death threats to their families.

Fiji Times July 13, 2013 Trio tell of horrifying ordeal, police, army investigate
http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=239592

Radio Fiji 15 July 2013 Police investigate alleged assault
http://www.fbc.com.fj/fiji/12007/police-investigate-alleged-assault

Naivalurua puts his man in INTERPOL

July 15, 2013

Naivalurua has sent an FPF officer to the INTERPOL HQ in France. Could it be that he’s anticipating the day when he’ll be an international fugitive and he wants to know the inner working of the INTERPOL international arrest warrants. When the rule of law is restored in Fiji he WILL be a wanted man. He is guilty of stopping the proper investigation of the Benedito beating and he will never be able to evade that. He is as guilty as the perpetrators.

Fiji Sun July 14, 2013 Fijian for INTERPOL
http://www.fijisun.com.fj/2013/07/14/fijian-for-interpol/