Suva City Council’s Administrator, Vijendra Prakash, is lying by trying to describe employment of his close relatives as false allegations and warning of disciplinary action against the "whistleblowers".
If the former interim local government minister, Filipe Bole, who appointed Prakash and other Administrators for Fiji’s towns and two cities did indeed give approval to Prakash to employ family members provided the jobs were first advertised, then Bole is equally guilty of nepotism and cronyism.
If Bole’s advice is taken on face value, then the jobs that have been filled by Prakash’s sister, brother and relatives of dairy farmers – Prakash is the Secretary of Dairy Farmers Association- were not advertised, our sources say.
In the case of his sister, sources say she was employed as a temporary worker to relieve an employee who had gone on leave. But she is still at the SCC Civic Centre where she is employed.
Prakash’s brother is employed as a health assistant, according to sources. And both vacancies were not advertised.
Last week we highlighted that the Council’s Human Resources Manager, Joe Hewson Turagasau, is awaiting sentencing in the magistrates court for fraud while employed as a Education Officer in the Northern Division.
He was employed at Prakash’s insistence despite the Council management opposing Hewson’s employment. Prakash’s cousin, Permanent Secretary for Local Government Ram Chandar, had given Hewson a favourable character reference.
Hewson is still employed at SCC and the regime has failed to act on documentary evidence that we have shown.