Blogger Manuqalo has raised some points about FNPF that deserve to be taken seriously, even if they are clearly wrong.
The investments at Natadola and Momi were started by the FNPF when it was governed by the Board and senior management appointed by the Qarase Government. That's quite true.
But that doesn't mean that the investments decisions were bad. At the time, by global standards, investment in real estate in Fiji didn't look to be a great investment. Global markets were achieving huge returns at the time. Come the Global Financial Crisis, however, and real estate in Fiji didn't look so bad, but that's not really what matters.
There are two reasons why Natadola investment was written down. First, the cost of construction blew out badly. The suspicion that this was due to coup-appointed FNPF board member, Felix Anthony, and his close relationship with the builder is confirmed by the fact that Anthony was booted out by Frank when the truth about cost explosion came to light within the regime, if not publicly, on top of the table.
Secondly, the damage done to the tourism industry by the coup could not help but wipe money off the value of tourism real estate in Fiji. Since then, this has been made much worse by the shabby treatment of foreign investors such as News Limited and Fiji Water.
The abrogation of the constitution and the sacking of the judiciary have made it clear to investors that property rights, like all legal rights, are worthless if there is no independent judiciary. All of the decrees which state that the laws cannot be contested in a court make it clear that the judiciary is just there to do the bidding of the executive, which is also the legislature.
The problems of the FNPF are the problems of the economy and the society. We are in the hands of a dictatorship which has delivered four straight years of economic disaster. And the self-appointed PM can't blame the Global Financial Crisis for the problems.
The bottom dropped out of our tourism industry in 2007, not late 2008 when the GFC struck. Nor should we forget that most of our tourists still come from Australia, which did not suffer under the GFC, but did have their High Commissioner booted out accompanied by a tirade of abuse.- (By Corruption Fighter)