By Suliasi Daunitutu
The media decree is now in force and with it has come a lot of emotions which reflect negatively on the professionalism of the illegal Bainimarama government (IBG), or more appropriately explained as “the continuing weakening of the Fijian Democratic structure” by the illegal Bainimarama government (IG).
The documents released by the Attorney General, we cannot help but notice, as in the past press releases how the IG has put great effort in trying to legitimise itself with the mention of approval by the illegal cabinet, gazetting and commencement date issued by the illegal Prime Minister. The Prime Minister, the Cabinet, the Attorney General (AG) and the document released are all illegal.
In time as we read through the decree and ultimately see the industry be policed by the ill conceived statute, we will undoubtedly arrive at the same conclusion, that the decree was another mechanism put in place to guarantee their (IG) own safety. The AG went on to say that the decree was constructed with the balance of media and the public in mind. This I find as an insult to the collective intelligence of the media industry worldwide given their (IG) one eyed preferences and biased treatment of the Fijian Media and their extreme ill feeling of foreign journalists who try to give an unprejudiced insight to events that have unfolded since December 2006. We are also familiar that some stakeholders were excluded from the consultations of the decree. The Fiji Times and TV One were not included so in my view the illegal AG perjured in his remarks
Out of this has also come a sad part of Fijian history, as we are staring at the reality of losing our first newspaper, the Fiji Times established in Levuka in 1869. Fiji Times now facing the same fate as most of our traditional and cultural heritage as Bainimarama further dismantles the proud Fijian characteristics by which we are identified and known. This is what Bainimarama terms as a “modernised Fiji” The mental conception of “all media to be 90% native owned defies logic in this new business management age. A well known Fijian businesswoman, Dr. Mere Samisoni explained the importance of good business management where there is a need for experience, learning and motivation in a free and friendly environment. Fiji Times has come through the years, endured different administrations and has become part of the Fijian household, proving its durability, worth or value to that very balance between Media and the Public. It employs over 200 staffs directly and even more indirectly, so there is another jump in unemployment figures to be contemplated. Fiji Times has a wealth of experience which will be regretted, an archive of Fijian history from the Deed of Cession to this day and ultimately a provider of employment and security to the Fijian people which will be sourly missed
As we watch the illegal Bainimarama government look North and acquire new friends, we should also be aware that the inclusion of new friends means the dispensing of many things Fijian, which will add to the social and moral decay our country is going through.