#header-inner img {margin: 0 auto !important; #header-inner {text-align: Center ;} Fiji Coupfourpointfive: Bainimarama’s coup and claim of desire for ethnic equality: Separating facts from fiction

Names and pseudonyms encouraged; annonymous posts accepted in interest of debate


Monday, March 26, 2012

Bainimarama’s coup and claim of desire for ethnic equality: Separating facts from fiction

Professor Wadan Narsey

Adjunct Professor
The Cairns Institute

James Cook University

former Professor of Economics at

The University of the South Pacific (USP)

[Seminar at James Cook University. 23rd March 2012]


Abstract

Fiji dictator on the international circuit
It is not disputed by historians that Fiji's 1987 and 2000 coups were about re-establishing indigenous Fijian control of government. In contrast, Bainimarama's 2006 coup has been popularly, but quite incorrectly, seen as removing an "indigenous-Fijian" Government of Qarase.

The Bainimarama Regime is now in the process of implementing constitutional and electoral change with the alleged objective of ensuring that the indigenous majority do not dominate the Indo-Fijian minority. Two allegedly “non-negotiable” objectives are to establish a proportional electoral system of "one person one vote", and a “new” Constitution to be guided by this Military Regime's previously formulated "People's Charter for Change, Peace and Progress".


This presentation will separate the facts from fiction in the above narrative, and explain why Bainimarama's proposed system is not at all about “protecting the Indo-Fijian minority”. Instead, given population projections, and if ethnic politics persists, then Bainimarama is likely to entrench majority indigenous control of government, quite contrary to the Regime’s alleged objectives.

 


Outline

  • Acknowledgments, sources, my role as “political participant” in Fiji
  • For Australians in the audience: Fiji’s history: population, people, society, politics
  • The constitutions and the coups of 1977, 1987, 2000 and 2006
  • The 2006 coup, Bainimarama’s justification? How different from the others?
  • The 1997 Constitution? Is it ethnically biased? Or undemocratic as alleged?
  • The 2000 coup: NOT a “George Speight coup”: New facts on Bainimarama’s role and the 2000 Army Mutiny
  • Leading to the 2006 coup: the coup in the judiciary, and Qarase’s actions.
  • The electoral system: was it ethnically biased? what will be the impact of Bainimarama’s proposed electoral reforms? Not what he claims.
  • Is there any need at all for “Affirmative Actions for any ethnic group? NO and YES:
  • Bainimarama’s claim of wanting racial equality and protection for Indo-Fijians: mostly fiction.

 
Acknowledgments
  • I thank Professor Hurriyet Babacan (Director of The Cairns Institute, JCU) and Professor Robbie Robertson (Head of School of Arts and Social Sciences, JCU) for facilitating my Adjunct appointment here.
  • I thank the many JCU colleagues who have welcomed me here.
  • You have a lovely campus here, with a very similar ambience to my old academic home at The University of the South Pacific campus in Suva.
  • I acknowledge the traditional custodians of the land on which this campus is situated- the Irrijandji and the Gimuy Yidinji people.
Initial sources to guide you: google the names(a) Dr Jon Fraenkel (ANU): detailed analyses of Fiji elections, especially under the Alternative Vote system of the 1997 Constitution.

(b) Professor Brij Lal (ANU): historian and member of the Reeves Commission whose Report was largely the basis of the 1997 Constitution (and the much criticised AV electoral system):


(c) Dr Robbie Robertson: book on the 2000 coup in Fiji (needs updating).


Teaching at USP for more than thirty five years I have written many articles for the Fiji public on politics, electoral systems, constitutional deficiencies and Fiji’s current social collapse, as well as our economic crises.


My website is under construction but already has most of the above articles on the constitution, electoral system, and politics from 1996, as well as this presentation.


http://narseyonfiji.wordpress.com/


Fiji’s current problems have complex origins: demographic, political, economic, social, legal, and economic: too much material to cover for the average Australian:


I will need to flash through some of the slides today (those not familiary with Fiji can read them later at your leisure on my website.


Qualification: I have also been a political “participant” (and failed politician)

  • Founding member of the Fiji Labour Party (FLP) in 1985 (for one year)
  • With many other USP academics, opposed the 1987 Rabuka coup (given free accommodation for a night by Rabuka’s Government but other colleagues suffered worse treatment- Anirudh Singh (yet to receive legal compensation) and Som Prakash).
  • Parliamentarian (1996-1999) as Shadow Finance Minister, under National Federation Party (NFP) (FLP was other party supported by Indo-Fijians);
  • NFP’s partnership with Rabuka’s SVT gave birth to 1997 Constitution (and its multi-party Government provision), but both our parties lost in the 1999 election (NFP lost all its seats).
  • When Bainimarama did the 2006 coup, he asked me to join his Military Council: I declined.
  • Because of my numerous critiques of the Bainimarama Regime since 2006 (most censored in Fiji media but on international blogs) Military Regime put financial pressure on USP who asked me to stop criticising the Regime or resign: I resigned. (the Regime paid its debt to USP within days).
  • So I am now grateful to The Cairns Institute for giving me academic refuge until I return to Fiji.
Historical overview: problematic “Indians” on a South Pacific island?
  • Fiji a British colony from 1874. 1970 politically independent, but in Commonwealth.
  • 1879 indentured Indian labourers brought to work in sugar plantations by the Australian giant, Colonial Sugar Refining Company (CSR)- major source of government revenues and for a 100 years, “the real government” in Fiji. CSR made a fortune and got out in 1973.
  • Small numbers of free Indian migrants: shops, tailors, barbers, shoe makers, laundry people, and other services.
  • Conditions harsh for indentured labourers who later became the thousands of small farmers who maintained the sugar industry till today.
  • Sugar once the backbone of Fiji economy: but virtual collapse in last five years (partly due to 2006 coup)
  • Tourism (largely based on indigenous Fijian labour) now the back-bone (with a gold mine, fish and water exports, and recently large remittance earnings from abroad.
  • Indo-Fijian population grew rapidly while the indigenous Fijian population initially went into decline (because of malaria and other diseases brought by the early colonialists).
  • With all political parties drawing support from ethnic blocks of voters, these changes in ethnic population proportions have had profound political implications for politics in Fiji.
  The most powerful graph on Fiji’s ethnic politics and history: a century of population changes
  • A century of changes in the ethnic components of Fijis population: what all Fijian politicians and parties saw with great fear:
  • Indo-Fijians rising from mere 10% in 1881, becoming higher than Fijians in 1946, and 51% in 1966 (% of voters even higher because of past age structures)
  • Post independence fear that any electoral system based on “equal suffrage” would tend to give political control to Indo-Fijian parties.

Currently: the proportion of Indo-Fijians rapidly declining

  • From 1966 the Indo-Fijian share began to decline (because of lower fertility) AND accelerated by massive emigration of Indo-Fijans after every coup: 1987, 2000, 2006
  • Indo-Fijians already about 35% now, and will be 26% by 2027 or lower.
  • Ethnic political tensions will become less and less of a problem over time: these last three decades: are a mere blimp in Fiji’s long-term history; will never be replicated again
  • The Indo-Fijian minority who Bainimarama claims to want to protect and ensure equality for with the indigenous people, is increasingly becoming a smaller and smaller interest group.

Fijians and Indo-Fijians in the Fiji economy

  • At independence in 1970, economy controlled totally by Australian and NZ capital: sugar mills, banks, insurance companies, wholesaling and retailing giants, manufacturers.
  • Indigenous Fijians were largely out of the cash economy during 100 years of colonial period
* owned 83% of the land, but most were leased to other ethnic groups
* kept in the villages and discouraged by colonialists from capitalist sector
* totally dominated the army and large proportion of the police
* communal in nature, non-accumulative (a bit different today)
* largely denied education during colonial ear.
* dominated employment in government and statutory corporations, with Fijian political control.
* now also the labour force in tourism, the real backbone of Fiji economy now.

  • Indo-Fijians at middle level: small enterprises; still large proportion of cane farmers; entrepreneurial, frugal, accumulative, forced to set up their own schools.
  • With independence and arrival of banks from India and US, Indo-Fijian and Chinese business community grew rapidly and have become retailing and manufacturing giants: what you see today throughout Fiji in all the urban areas.
  • So currently, the only real gap between indigenous Fijians and Indo-Fijians is AT THE TOP 5%.
  • Exception: one major indigenous Fijian company Fijian Holdings Limited which bought out key Australian monopolies, with shares owned by Fijian elite and Fijian Provincial Councils (on going saga): but note FHL only represents Fijian ownership; very little Fijian entrepreneurship.

Ethnic groups socially compartmentalized

  • Very few inter-marriages in colonial times: Indo-Fijians discouraged from living in Fijian villages; more nowadays
  • Very self-contained and independent ethnic societies
  • Indigenous Fijian society extremely strong, own language(s); mostly Christian (rivalry between Methodist and Catholic, and recently new Churches making inroads); strong links to political parties and coups; culturally solid based on chiefly system (even if Great Council of Chiefs has been allegedly abolished.
  • Strong Fijian army with powerful connections to the British Crown and British army, peace-keeping in the Middle East
  • Indo-Fijians also compartmentalised into different religions (Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs); Hindu sects (Sanatan Dharamm, Arya Samaj); also ethnically compartmentalised (Northern and Southern origins)
  • Fiji’s education system managed by all these different religious authorities, very little by Government (although now largely financed by Government)
  • All religious bodies have strong political allegiances, critical in one coup or another: a great PhD/book to be written: “Religion and Politics in Fiji”: new chapters post-2006.

Economy, language, religion, culture: encouraged parties based on ethnic groups

  • Alliance Party: 1970 to 1987: led by Ratu Mara, based on Fijian votes (and 20% of Indo-Fijian votes).
  • NFP and FLP both based on Indo-Fijian votes (minimal Fijian); sugar industry, unions
  • SVT: 1990 to 1999: led by Rabuka: based on Fijian votes, mostly rural villagers, but also urban civil servants
  • SDL: from 2001 (led by Qarase): Fijian voters, rural and urban (effec. SVT renamed)
  • Both SVT and SDL believed in Affirmative Action for indigenous Fijians in education, government grants and finance (seen by others as racial discrimination)
  • But 2006 Government was: SDL (led by Qarase) in partnership with FLP (BUT Chaudhry stayed out and tried to become Leader of the Opposition)
  • NFP not in Parliament because of weakness of Alternative Vote system (which destroys small parties)
  • 2006: Bainimarama’s Military Regime: included FLP for a year only; now, most Ministers are indigenous Fijians; with one Indo-Fijian (Khaiyum) always in limelight

Fiji’s four sets of “constitutions/laws” governing elections

  • 1874 to 1970: colony, ruled by British law;
  • 1970 Constitution agreed to by all political parties and leaders in London.
  • 1990 Constitution imposed by Rabuka Government: racially biased
  • 1997 Constitution: unanimously passed by the nationally elected Parliament, with power-sharing Multi-party Government provision.
  • On the surface, all these constitutions and electoral systems might be expected to give indigenous Fijians effective control of Government
- through the kinds of constituencies: majority “communal” (fewer “open”)
- through the voting systems in place: at first the FPP system, later the AV system
- even though Indo-Fijian voters were in a slight majority for brief period.

Historical reality: Indo-Fijian parties did win now and then: but coup

Whenever that happened, there was a coup of some sort or other restoring the indigenous Fijian Party to control of Government
  • 1977: the Governor did the coup (like Kerr and Whitlam) restoring Mara
  • 1987: The RFMF (led by Rabuka) did the coup: Rabuka elected eventually
  • 2000: RFMF elements did the coup (real story now emerging), bringing in Qarase who in 2001 got elected on his own merits.
BUT
The 2006 coup by Bainimarama and RFMF: was supposedly different, on the surface: removed a government controlled by the major Fijian party (SDL)


[The Bainimarama Regime never acknowledges that the deposed 2006 Government was led by SDL but in partnership with FLP (the main Indo-Fijian party).]


Bainimarama’s justification for the 2006 coup: keeps changing

  • Bainimarama alleged that he removed Qarase’s 2006 SDL/FLP Government because of its
1. Corruption
2. Electoral fraud against the Indo-Fijian FLP party
3. Racism against the minority Indo-Fijian people.

  • Fiji public and international community partly believed these arguments especially when Chaudhry and FLP joined the Regime straight after the 2006 coup; as well as other Indo-Fijian and Catholic religious organisations.
  • BUT Five years later, no evidence of major corruption or electoral fraud has been brought forward; nor of evidence of any significant racism against Indo-Fijians;
  • Today Bainimarama Regime alleges it wants to ensure racial equality, and will prevent the unfair domination of the Indo-Fijian minority by the indigenous Fijian majority,

(a) changing the electoral system to “universal suffrage” (each voter’s vote has the same value “one person one vote” without any communal seats)
(b) there must be “proportionality” in the elections results: so that each party’s number of seats in Parliament will be in proportion to the votes received.
(c) with all the recommendations of the “Charter” being implemented.

Briefly: earlier constitutions and electoral systems

  • Can read Brij Lal and Fraenkel.
  • Need to understand:
“communal constituencies”: ethnic candidates in ethnic constituencies (Fijian, Indo-Fijian, Generals) and only people of the same ethnicity could vote.
  • Original intention: to reassure indigenous Fijians of political control: which it did.
  • But they also designed to give the Europeans, Chinese, “Part-Europeans” disproportionate power in Parliament, usually wielded against the Indo-Fijians (corresponding also to the business rivalry between these ethnic groups).
  • But with the 1997 Constitution, came a large number (25) of “open seats” in which anyone could stand and every one could vote.
  • These “open” seats were virtually the “one person-one vote” system that Bainimarama claims to want for Fiji today. We will come back to this in a while.

Critical to understand the 1997 Constitution, passed by Fiji Parliament which Bainimarama has “purportedly abrogated”

  • It has an Alternative Vote electoral system of preferences for counting votes.
  • All voters had 2 votes: one for an “Open” seat, and one for “own Communal” seat
  • Out of a total of 71 parliamentary seats: yes: the majority were communal.
    23 Communal Fijian seats (only Fijians could stand, and Fijians could vote)
    19 Communal Indo-Fijian seats (likewise)
    1 Communal Rotuman seat (likewise)
    3 Communal General seats (for Europeans, Chinese and others). (likewise)

  • These communal seats reassured different ethnic parties that they would be represented in Parliament.
25 Open Seats: anyone could stand, all voters of all ethnic groups voted.

  • Fijian political parties and their allies should have been able to win majority of seats.
  • But history indicates that they did not, in 1999.

In 1999, the FLP won despite having minority of first preference votes

  • Largely because of crafty alliances and preference sharing with other parties, some of whom were extreme ethno-nationalist Fijian parties openly anti-Indian.
  • There were also a large number of small Fijian parties splitting the Fijian votes,
  • The AV system worked to eliminate the smaller parties, like NFP who could not win 50% of the votes in any one constituency.
  • Unwisely, however, FLP chose to leave the largest Fijian party SVT (led by Rabuka) out of the Multi-party Government. Rabuka was willing to serve in the FLP Government.
  • There is a fascinating story behind this, yet to be told by historians, about the role of the Mara/Ganilau clan in ensuring the defeat of Rabuka a commoner who had the temerity to defeat Ratu Mara’s wife (one of the big three High Chiefs) for the Presidency of the SVT.
  • Key members of the defeated SVT campaigned for the removal of the FLP Government (including Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, who is currently and strangely a member of the Bainimarama Regime, as well as another ethno-nationalist, Isikeli Mataitoga)
  • One year later, came the 2000 coup by the Counter Revolutionary Warfare Unit (CRW was originally set up by Rabuka.) led by ex-SAS British Army soldier – Ligairi- revered by the CRW and in RFMF, and answerable only to Bainimarama.

The public clearly saw that the 2000 coup as was the 1987 coup

Supported by
* all the Fijian political parties SVT, FAP, VLV, SDL, etc.
* the Great Council of Chiefs and high chiefs of Fiji (many of whom tried to become Prime Ministers and Ministers)
* the Methodist Church, the bastion of the Fijian political parties.
* the majority of indigenous Fijian people and civil servants
* even President Ratu Mara, whose own role came under threat, stated that Chaudhry could not come back as Prime Minister: ie the coup was going to be successful, whatever happened.

The 1987 and 2000 coups were opposed by the majority of

- Indo-Fijian people and the Indo-Fijian religious groups (Hindus, Muslims etc),
- and the Catholic Church (substantial minority of Fijian voters).

New facts have come out on the 2000 coup: Evans Board of Inquiry Report
  • A website maintained by Ratu Tevita Mara (former senior army officer and son of Ratu Kamisese Mara) who escaped from Bainimarama) http://www.truthforfiji.com/.
  • This website has the Report of the RFMF’s own Evans Board of Inquiry into the 2000 coup (including detailed verbatim evidence of 2000 coup soldiers involved and others).
http://www.truthforfiji.com/uploads/8/4/2/3/8423704/20120305-1st_meridian_report_rfmf_opt2_small.pdf

  • The website also has many statements by senior army officers who tried to discourage Bainimarama from doing the coup against Qarase
  • [Strange omission: The  Evans BOI Report on the website TruthforFiji does not include a 100 pages of the original Evans Report, including the evidence of key witnesses like George Speight and Silatolu:   TruthforFiji have stated  on the blog C4.5 26/3/2012) that the Evans Report given to them did not have these missing pages. This omission raises serious questions about the motives of the people who sent the Evans BOI Report to TruthForFiji.  See my article on “Fiji’s cancerous conspiracies of silence”]See my article on “Fiji’s cancerous conspiracies of silence”]
  • Nevertheless, the available pages of the Evans Report help to fill in some of the missing jigsaw pieces of the 2000 coup. The missing jigsaw pieces will surface some day.
The Evans BOI substantiates the following 10 points (some already known):
  1. Bainimara had personally and inexplicably brought out of retirement an ex-SAS soldier (Ligairi) who reported only to him, and who became the leader of the CRW soldiers in Parliament, holding the hostages;
  2. Bainimarama was told by senior officers the exact date of the coup (but went off to Norway)
  3. Bainimarama and named senior officers authorized the arms and ammunition to keep going into the Parliament to the CRW soldiers; as well as food; while salaries were continued.
  4. Many Fijian politicians and high chiefs (including Cokanauto and Epenisa Cakobau) knew about the 2000 coup weeks before; several chiefs tried to become Ministers in the Speight Government.
  5. George Speight took over as leader only when the real coup plotters (unnamed) failed to surface
  6. Speight’s group not only named Ministers and a new President, but also a new Commander (Colonel Vatu) and a new Chief of Staff (Tarakinikini, who was in contact with the CRW soldiers early on the morning of the coup)
  7. Only then did Bainimarama put down the coup, arrested and jailed Speight and CRW soldiers, many of whom he had already promised “forgiveness and amnesty”.
  8. Bainimarama asked his Commander in Chief, President (Ratu Kamiseses Mara) to “step aside”- ie Bainimarama effectively deposed the President; as also did some other senior RFMF officers.
  9. Even in 2000, Bainimarama claimed to abrogate the Constitution and take “Executive Authority”;
  10. Bainimarama was the only RFMF senior officer who refused to appear before the Evans Inquiry.

CRW mutiny in November 2000 and attempt to kill Bainimarama


  • Mutiny led by many of the same CRW group who did the earlier May 2000 coup, trying to kill Bainimarama: there was a clear sense of betrayal.
  • The CRW soldiers killed 3 innocent soldiers in the barracks and the RFMF put down the mutiny.
  • But the RFMF also took five CRW soldiers not directly involved in the mutiny, tortured them to find who was behind the mutiny: they ended up dead (horrific photos now coming out on the web: see http://www.truthforfiji.com/.
  • Some civilians, including high chiefs, were tried and jailed for taking false oaths during the 2000 coup, and for inciting the mutiny.
  • Bainimarama, after regaining control, did not restore Chaudhry as Prime Minister.
  • Bainimarama himself wanted to become Prime Minister: but was opposed by senior officers.
  • Only then did he appoint Qarase as Interim Prime Minister, and virtually all indigenous Fijian Ministers, thereby ensuring that indigenous Fijians were again in total control.
  • There has been no public inquiry into either the 2000 coup or the Mutiny. Why not?

Legal judgments: by Anthony Gates (2001), supported by Court of Appeal


  • Read Anne Twomey (“The Fijian coup cases”) and articles by Brij Lal and Fraenkel
  • Decisions: Constitution had not been, and could not be abrogated, even by the President;
  • President Iloilo made illegal decisions, including appointing Qarase as Acting PM
  • Nevertheless, when elections were held: Qarase and his newly formed SDL Party won the majority of the seats (as the population numbers predicted); but FLP claimed electoral fraud.
  • But Qarase in 2001, like Chaudhry in 1999, refused to respect the spirit of the Multi-Party provision in the Constitution, and excluded the Fiji Labour Party from Cabinet.
  • Net result: a Fijian party was again in total control of government.
  • President (Ratu Mara of Lau) was gone; and the balance of Fijian politics had shifted to the mainland Viti Levu, as was attempted during the 2000 coup.
  • FLP went into Opposition alleging electoral fraud etc.

2 Forces destabilised Fiji: the judiciary and Qarase/Bainimarama fallout


  • Bitter dispute began between the High Court judges (pro and anti Qarase), on issues , related to the treatment of coup offenders and other matters:
  • Chief Justice (Daniel Fatiaki) on one side (supporting Qarase), and Nazhat Shameem /Anthony Gates on the other (supporting Bainimarama). These stories yet to be written.
  • Qarase began to release key figures associated with the 2000 coups and the mutiny: and drafted legislation to grant amnesty to mutiny supporters; to the anger of Bainimarama
  • Qarase named replacement for Bainimarama as Commander of RFMF,but attempt failed;
  • Commissioner of Police (Australian Andrew Hughes) tried to prosecute Bainimarama on several charges (including sedition, and the murder of CRW soldiers in 2000): failed and escaped to Australia.
  • Around 2003, Bainimarama asked his officers to plan a coup; and sacked all senior officers who did not support his plans to remove Bainimarama.
  • Qarase planned legislation regarding Fijian qoliqoli rights (over marine resources) angering tourism resort owners- some suspected of supporting Bainimarama’s 2006 coup.
  • In May 2006, Qarase again won the elections again: but formed a Multi-Party SDL/FLP Govt.
  • In December 2006, Bainimarama did the coup removing the SDL/FLP Government.

Critical in the 2006 coup by Bainimarama: coup by the judiciary (Nazhat Shameem, Tony Gates), a pliant Ratu Iloilo, and Ratu Epeli Nailatikau


  • Bainimarama suspended Daniel Fatiaki as Chief Justice
  • High Court judge Naz Shameem illegally chaired the Judicial Services Commission and appointed Tony Gates as Acting Chief Justice, who justified 2006 coup.
  • Bainimarama went through a charade of illegally removing the President (now Iloilo), appointing an Interim Prime Minister who calls for the elected parliament to be dissolved, then illegally reappointing Iloilo as President.
  • Iloilo then appointed Bainimarama as Acting Prime Minister, and other Ministers, and justifies everything that Bainimarama decrees.
  • Eventually, Gates and two others (Pathik and Byrne) hear the legal appeal against the 2006 coup and give an astonishing judgment in favour of Bainimarama and Iloilo (Pathik leading light of Arya Samaj and newly formed Fiji University which receives great support from Bainimarama Regime, including Minister of Education Filipe Bole, recently employed by Fiji University).
  • Iloilo eventually goes and is replaced by another Bainimarama appointment, Epeli Nailatikau (who earlier failed to get GCC nomination as Vice President, former Commander of RFMF and son-in-law of Kamisese Mara), who now signs all the Military Regime decrees.

Long list of 2006 coup supporters appear: from Fiji and abroad!


  • The Fiji Labour Party and Mahendra Chaudhry (as Minister of Finance) quickly join the Military Regime, giving it great legitimacy and support.
  • A number of Fiji organisations join the Bainimarama initiative for the “Charter” exercise:
  • The Head of the Catholic Church in Fiji (Mataca) and many prominent Catholics (Arms, Barr)
  • The Hindu and Muslim religious organisations and many prominent leaders
  • The Fiji Human Rights Commission (led by Shaista Shameem) issues a number of reports justifying the coup and vilifying the SDL Government (ignoring the FLP partners in it).
  • Prominent politicians (like Filipe Bole and Inoke Kubuabola) join the Military Regime including high chiefs like Epeli Ganilau, Epeli Nailatikau and others
  • Groups of influential businessmen and business organisations openly support Bainimarama
  • Prominent intellectuals (led by John Samy and other ADB functionaries) create a “Charter” and a Road-map that will supposedly guide Fiji forever into the future.
  • Charter supporters declare that all previous elections and governments were “non-democratic” and unfair to “minority ethnic groups” and join the NCBBF exercises.
  • First paragraph of the Charter claimed: The 1997 Constitution is supreme and the Charter will abide by it and strengthen it;
  • Charter allegedly approved by the vast majority of Fiji people: 400 thousand signatures.

Then the 2009 Court of Appeal rules 2006 coup illegal


  • The Gates/Pathik/Byrne judgment was declared incorrect and the Bainimarama Regime illegal.
  • Bainimarama resigns (for the night); but next day reverses, purporting to abrogate the Constitution (regardless of the Charter’s first clause), and proceeded “Business as usual” till today.
  • John Samy, heads of all the supporting religious organizations and NGPs, make no statement or protest at the alleged abrogation of the 1997 Constitution, thereby supporting the fraud on the nation, with the Charter.
  • Bainimarama makes no further statements of electoral fraud or corruption by Qarase.
  • Fiji suspended by EU, Commonwealth Secretariat, Forum Secretariat, and continued principled opposition from Australia and NZ.
  • Regime’s current propaganda is about establishing a “non-racial Fiji”, a new “home grown” Constitution with a new “non-racial” electoral system with “one person one vote” and “proportionality”.
  • Fiji’s assisted by China and India, and receives support from the Melanesian Spearhead Group.

Bainimarama has total control of all institutions and organizations


  • Appointment of selected judiciary (many from Sri Lanka)
  • Appointment of illegal President who issues decrees which may not be challenged in court on any issue, including erosion of fundamental human rights (private property, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of recourse to courts. etc)
  • Key appointments in Governments nearly all indigenous Fijians (a handful of Indo-Fijians)
  • Total control of police (also militarized) with increased powers of arrest and detention, with injuries to victims (person or property) not justiciable
  • Militarisation of senior civil service positions (all Fijian military officers) (RFMF still 99% indigenous Fijians).
  • Suspension of trade union rights.
  • Political parties and leaders stomped upon and now “demonized”.
  • Methodist Church stomped upon, with no protest from sister religious organisations.
  • Suspension and final abolition of Great Council of Chiefs
  • Total media censorship (directly for two years), now media into self-censorship mode, while millions spent on propaganda through American lobbying firm Qorvis.
Bainimarama’s government of last five years: is in total contradiction of all the Charter’s principles
  • No Auditor General’s Reports from 2006 till now.
  • Huge over-spending of Military Budget: hundreds of millions by now
  • Key militarization of many senior civil service posts
  • Thirty year back-pay to Bainimarama himself
  • Multiple salaries to a few ministers- paid through the company of Khaiyum’s aunty
  • Massive contracts being given out- no public accountability
  • Hundreds of millions lost by Fiji National Provident Fund whose board is totally controlled by Regime (no reports released to the public)- pensions to be halved.
  • Nepotism rife: appointment of Bainimarama’s family members (some over 55 years of age) to high positions while ordinary civil servants forced to resign at 55.
  • Release from prison of Military Regime’s friends, some convicted of serious crimes.
  • All the time proclaiming that his government and all future governments will be guided by the “Charter” Principles (just forget the first clause: supremacy of 1997 constitution).

Central to Bainimarama’s propaganda on “constitutional reform” is allegation of “ethnic unfairness” in 1997 Constitution


  • Post 2006, there was massive propaganda mounted by Bainimarama supporters (including respectable clerics like David Arms and Kevin Barr, and John Samy)
  • That the 1997 Constitution’s electoral system was “undemocratic” and “unfair to ethnic groups” because it did not give equal values to all votes.
  • That Military Regime would for the first time introduce “universal suffrage” and “one person one vote” system which would not be biased against any ethnic group, especially the Indo-Fijian minority.
  • In the face of this barrage of publicity even the international community stunned into silence: what can they argue?
  • Of course, the AV system of preferences determining the outcome in each constituency, whether communal or open, required the winner to have 50% of the final votes.
  • Hence it was the small parties that lost out, while the large parties invariably gained.
  • The Alternative Votes system was unfair, but not to ethnic groups.
  • FIRST PROOF: An Indo-Fijian dominated party (FLP) with less than 50% of votes, was able to win control of Government in 1999 under the very same system.
Compare 2006 Election results, and voting in the 25 “Open” constituencies
  • These “Open” constituencies are exactly what “one person-one vote” “universal suffrage” requires- with any candidate of any ethnicity standing, and all voters voting with one person one vote: the Bainimarama objective
  • If you use “proportionality” of the votes given in these open constituencies to estimate what numbers of seats would have gone to Fijian parties in total (several of them) and Indo-Fijian parties in total (just 2 of them) and compare with what they actually received:


Ethnically, there was no great unfairness, in either 2006, 2001 or 1999.
  • Disproportionality is far worse in US, UK Australia, India all democratic countries
Yes, large parties (Qarase’s SDL and Chaudhry’s FLP) did benefit
  • Qarase’s SDL was entitled to 31 but got 36
  • But it was the smaller Fijian parties that lost out
  • Chaudhry’s Fiji Labour Party was entitled to 28 but got 31
  • It was the smaller Indo-Fijian Party (NFP) lost out: should have got 4 but got 0 in 2006.
  • So the electoral system in the 1997 Constitution was unfair to small political parties,
  • But not to ethnic groups as the Bainimarama supporters claimed.
  • Having a proportional system (whether combined with a List element or not) will help the smaller parties definitely.
  • It will have ensure ethnic proportionality, but that was there already.

What of Bainimarama fighting to restore “democracy” as he claims?


  • Usual meaning of “democracy”:
government of the people
for the people
by the people

  • Before 1997 Constitution, it was “winner takes all”:
  • As in US, UK, Australia, and India: nobody calls them “undemocratic”.
  • In Fiji, “winner takes all” “worked: when the winner was a Fijian party, but resulted in a coup when it was an Indo-Fijian party
  • But the 1997 Constitution brought in one element which for the first time in the history of Fiji, brought in a really genuine democratic element of government by the people: The power-sharing multi-party government provision.
  • If only the politicians had appreciated it right from the beginning.
The 1997 Constitution mandated a “Multi-Party” Cabinet”: genuine power-sharing
  • In the 1997 Constitution: any party with 10% of the seats in Parliament (only 8 seats out of 71) must be invited into Cabinet: genuine democracy
  • It was a powerful mechanism to ensure that significant minority interests were part of the government running the country.
  • But in 1999, the entitled Fijian SVT party was kept out of Cabinet (result: coup)
  • In 2001, Qarase’s SDL kept out the entitled FLP (political conflict continued)
  • BUT in 2006, Qarase’s SDL gave the Indo-Fijian FLP 8 good portfolios.
  • But strangely, Chaudhry decided to stay out (and tried to even become the Leader of the Opposition)
  • The system was finally working as intended, in 2006. But 6 months later Bainimarama did the coup in December 2006: and quickly joined by Chaudhry (FLP President had earlier publicly stated that it would be good if Bainimarama did the coup)
  • Popularly forgotten: Bainimarama’s 2006 coup did not just remove Qarase and his Fijian SDL Party, but also the Indo-Fijian Fiji Labour Party Ministers (like Dutt, Gounder and others) who were doing a good job as Ministers.

Future: what comes if Bainimarama’s stated objectives are followed: with proportional “one-person one-vote” system AND Charter?


  • Given my population projections of those aged 18 and over:
  • By 2014, the proportions of voters by ethnicity AND the proportion of seats in parliament will be as follows: elected by

Fijians   56%
Indo-Fijians  39%
Others  5%
    100%

  • i.e. whoever the Fijian voters want to vote for (whether Fijians, Indo-Fijians or Others) will comprise 56% of seats in Parliament, and if they all gang together, will be in a position to form Government.
  • But what about the 39% of the parliamentarians elected by Indo-Fijians?
  • But what about the 5% of the parliamentarians elected by “Others”?
  • “Tough luck” according to what is in Bainimarama/Mataca/Samy’s Charter.

Bainimarama’s Charter (p.12) very unwisely calls for the abolition of the Multi-Party Government provision


  • Which means that if ethnic block voting persists,
  • Given the demographic changes taking place, and the fact that the indigenous Fijian proportion will keep rising in the future to way above the 60% currently
  • The indigenous majority, under a proportional “one person-one vote” system, without the Multi-party power sharing requirement, will tend to form government.
  • Other ethnic groups, will be the perpetual opposition, with no guarantee of a place in Cabinet and Government.
  • According to Bainimarama’s current proposals for an electoral system TOGETHER with the elimination of the Multi-Party provision will: We will be back to the “Winner takes all” situation:
  • Of course, political could become genuinely become multi-racial, by a wave of some strange magic wand.
  • Unfortunately, Bainimarama is only waving guns and military decrees around.
  • Neither are going to change the ethnic biases of the politicians or voters or soldiers.

Is there any need for “Affirmative Action” for any ethnic group?


  • Bainimarama’s propaganda, so readily believed by Indo-Fijians abroad, has been that he wants to stop the kinds of racist policies being followed by Qarase’s government in favour of indigenous Fijians through his “Affirmative Action” strategies.
  • Bainimarama alleges that he is fairer to Indo-Fijians.
  • Important to ask:

Q1. Is there any need for any affirmative action for any ethnic group?
Q2. How have the ethnic groups faired under Bainimarama’s government of the last five years- longer than the life of a normal parliament in Fiji?
Has Bainimarama been beneficial for Indo-Fijians?
How have indigenous Fijians fared under Bainimarama?


For the rest of the article follow the link below to Dr Narsey's website http://narseyonfiji.wordpress.com/

45 comments:

Anonymous said...

the simple question is how many indians how many chinese how many whiteman how many other races apart from fijians work in illegal PM office????????

The answer is zero.

There is no indian or chainese or whiteman in PM office now.

So what is this no racial bullsit.

Its a sham and facade of the dictator.

Anonymous said...

Interesting reading..

Anonymous said...

You list the 1997 as "unanimously passed by the nationally elected Parliament". However, this "nationally elected parliament" was itself elected under the 1990 constitution, which you yourself label as "racially biased". Therefore, the 1997 constitution is also based on a racially biased foundation. That can be seen in the many recommendations from the Reeves commission that were left out or watered down. The final 1997 document is flawed in many places and that is why we need to start again from a fresh slate now!

Anonymous said...

The dictator is a racist.

there is no non fijians working in the illegal PM office.

This is fact.

So that the new consitution to provide multiracial new fiji?

can the dicatator appoint a deputy indian PM and appoint 50% staff in PM office -indians- the answer is no.

this man is a liar and racist.

Dalit said...

As always, quality analysis from this guy that deserves to be given wide publicity in the Fiji dailies.

truthforfiji said...

Wadan Narsey's article is on "Separating facts from fiction" but he does go into conspiracy mode claiming there are strange omissions, that the TruthforFiji website left out 100 pages of the Evans' RFMF Board of Inquiry Report, including evidence by key witnesses like George Speight and Silatolu.... This is fiction and incorrect!

The RFMF Board of Inquiry Report that we have posted on this website is the exact same copy of the report that was smuggled out of Fiji and handed over to us. It does not include those pages referred to by Wadan Narsey and we did not omit any pages. However, Wadan Narsey's comments do add nasty fuel for conspiracy theorists and evil bitching, which Wadan Narsey does in his article on “Fiji’s cancerous conspiracies of silence”, which is available on his website.

Any evidence by George Speight and/or Ratu Silatolu would give more insight and credence to Ratu Tevita's claims and to the events surrounding the 2000 Coup. Their testimonials are definitively crucial and would have been included. Other people have said that they too have a copy of the RFMF BoI report. Maybe their copy has these missing pages that Wadan Narsey speaks of. If so, then please upload them to the web for everyone to see!

Keep The Faith said...

@ Anon March 26, 2012 12:12 PM: We've had 3 elections under the premise of the 1997 Constitutions. In 1999 the FLP won, so remind us again please where the racism from the 1997 Constitution is derived from?

Once again, we remind you that if the Constitution is racist it can only be amended by a democratically instituted parliament. The Ghai, Nandan and Vakatale circus is not that body.

Anonymous said...

thought provoking articles...love reading it...although I don't agree with some of his opinion... I do agree with the fact that our beloved country and her people need to do a lot of soul searching and ask a lot of provoking questions about where we are heading...

Anonymous said...

The facts as laid out by Coup 4.5 speaks volumes of truth; how the people of Fiji have been misled by the military coups over the years.
So what is the truth?
First, nationalist sentiment in 1987 under "Rambo" and again in 2000, Speight with half the support of the military.
Then a complete U-turn and a coup to clean up supposed corruption and racial disharmony?
It seems that all along the driving motive behind successive military coups has been greed and deceit. And an overwhelming desire for power and wealth. The entitlements of only an elected government mandated by its people.
It's bemusing to see some of these beneficiaries of the corrupt past and present governments are the same people.
Melanesian politics with a spicy flavour!

Anonymous said...

"Ethnic political tensions will become less and less of a problem over time"

I was myself sharing that opinion a few years ago. After spending some time in Fiji and the Pacific, I would tend to be more careful.

The root of the problem, from what I see, is that ethnic Fijians are still unable to run businesses. In one particular town of Fiji, there is hardly any Fijian business at all...

Now let's look at Fiji's neighbours: Tonga and the Solomons. In both countries, a tiny minority of Chinese people run businesses, we are talking about 1% or less of the total population. Look what happenned in Honiara and Nuku'alofa during the last years...

A fact will remain: if the native people of the pacific are unable to run businesses and achieve higher education, then instability will remain an issue.

Those who are familiar with Fijian culture know what major challenges this community is facing when it comes to money. As for the difficulty to achieve higher education, more research needs to be done to identify the reasons why so few natives are reaching university and - more importantly in this competitive world - get good marks. For example, one expat administrator at a fishing plant told me that all the engineers there were earning 60,000$F a year with accomodation included and coming from the Philippines because the locals wouldn't do a good job.

In order to make Fiji a success story, I keep repeating we will have to find a solution to the "Fijian cultural challenge" of running businesses (fiscal discipline...) and improving school marks and achievements.

If Indians intellectuals are leaving but the top business people stay (for obvious reasons) and the native population become predominant, this will not create stability, that's for sure.

Anonymous said...

What happened to Robin Irwin MP? Noted these comments in 2006. We need that sort of guy now.

"The arrival in Cabinet of newly elected Minister Robin Irwin is the best thing that has happened to Fiji for a long time.
I agree with Mr Irwin...Fiji is one of the nations who sell their water at the cheapest rate...this might mean that water costs would rise but then it will also discourage squatting etc because if you want to live in the urban areas, then be able to afford the amenities and basics. Water needs to be harnessed and only competition in privatisation would take its quality to international standards and ensure good services. There is too much corruption going on in the Public Works Department and the quicker it is privatised the better.
I kind of like this man actually, he's what you can call a decision maker and doesn't muck around.
Yeah same here...never heard he existed until the elections but then some of us are not from that area and do not know him but from what I hear he commands a lot of respect in Savusavu because he's a man who gets things done."

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 12:12pm bang on target -its the same thing that i written about in the past! Thank goodness some people understand what i have harped about for so long! There are missing pieces of evidence from the mere fact one just need to look at the list of those who were charged and those were who gave evidence?????

Anonymous said...

Ian Simpson, Taveuni:

I have written previously on two issues that I would like changed in an amended 1997 constitution. www.fijibuzz.com .
In hind-site and in peeling the onion further on our political failings I believe that the core problem we have is in practising a multi party Westminster system. The past 40 years under such a system has well enough proven its utter failure.

I believe that a one party State is the way forward for our nation, for the next number of years at least. It is critical that our nation heals its wounds, that the populace is induced and or or compelled to become engaged in government and citizenship building.

I believe that the Biblical model of leaders of ten must be the base, the foundation, the rock on which a democracy can be built, to full fill the ideals of the 1997constitution.

I hope that Coup 4.5 will print this as it has chosen not to print my call for a one party State in the past. Please do not confuse a one party state with communism. A one party state can and does allow and protect private property, such as China now allows, as has Japan, Singapore, and India, all of whom have had one party rule for most of their independent history. The benefit of people drawing on their cultures to apply pragmatic solutions to their politics to bring about harmony and economic progress. Well worth emulating don't you think!

There is no doubt that the 1997 constitution can not be legally ( morally) abrogated for any reason so far applied. The reality is that we presently operate without a constitution, in common with England. After what will be 7 and 3/4 years without a parliament, we will be expected to go to an election under a new Constitution. This should never be. I believe that the only legal remedy open to us should be applied , and that should be the application of " a referendum of the people".

The 1997 Constitution recognises (1) a Nation under God (2) A Democracy
We failed on "count (2)".

Let that be our first question in a referendum.
1. a. Do you want a one party State (Tick)
b. Do you want a Westminster multi-party State. (Tick)

Question 1. asks the all important, what type of true democracy do we want. Rather important don't you think? or are we to continue with a failed model? What is it they say about insanity? Doing over and over...

Only after “the people” have decided the form of our democracy can we build it. Either way, it is not difficult to present a template that will be fleshed out after the main question has been decided upon.

The next question should no doubt be the instance of a REAL truth Commission, that is manned by eminent non Fiji citizens, to finally, hopefully, find the truth behind our coups since 1987.
The content of such a Commission can most certainly be fleshed out before hand.

The only big question left, is what is the big elephant in the room going to do, the RFMF.
Will they abide by a “ People's referendum”?
Will they become subject to “ the People's Congress or Parliament”?

Otherwise, we shall ever be trying to build a nation on quicksand.

Take note:
God is not mocked.
Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
Its right there in the Bible somewhere.

So if we are to have a new constitution, it may be wise to start with...A Nation not under God.
A Nation not under Truth, A Nation in Sheep's Clothing.

...and let the games continue.

Hail Tu'uakitau Cokanauto said...

Tu'uakitau Cokanauto ( I won't even call him Ratu) is a totally gutless fence-sitter with no talent or ability, but got by on his chiefly status. A total waste. Not surprised he was part of the 2000 coup conspiracy. He has no job. Probably sucking off Bainimarama's teats, like his coup-supporting traitorous. Tuki needs to be investigated.

Anonymous said...

You are right there KTF. No one elected these flotsams to decide on our future without our consent. This illegal regime do not have any mandate from the people to unilaterally impose any decision regarding the governance and future of the country. Lets have an election under a universally accepted system and see what happens - since we are not able to restore the 1997 constitution. And not the farce of what is being conjured to fool the people and the world.

Taukei. said...

One thing Prof Narsey & others seem reluctant to acknowledge is that prior to independence (& only ceasing with Rabuka's coup)there was a concerted effort by Indians via their politicians to gain political & economic control over Viti - its people & recources.

Anonymous said...

@ Taukei, you are right, and they are still at it today trying to gain control over Fiji and its resources.

Anonymous said...

@Taukei You are right. Rabuka's coup stopped the Indians from kicking out the Fijians living in Tavua town.

Radiolucas said...

@ Ian Simpson

"Its right there in the Bible somewhere."

If that's your proposition for a one-party state, I respectfully suggest that you revisit concept for it's social ramifications and think about what happens if you mandate for the "One Party"?

Because the next thought should be 'cult of the personality' - which is just as bad, if not far worse, than a party-based west minister system. Think about Kim Jong Il and the others that Frank has had good cause to emulate.

Another salient point is that Japan and many Asian countries usually have a monarchy, social hierarchies and/or caste systems in place - something that would need to be enacted in Fiji to work. But does ANYONE really want that?

I don't mean to go on the attack - because debate is great - but I really get annoyed with Politicians playing on their personalities rather than their politics. They all do it - the key is how do you minimise it? I just don't see how a one-party state would get rid of it - it would probably exacerbate it.

Bhaiya Babu to Bai said...

Bai, You just only worry about the very very few Indos remaining around you - (they are the very reason the rest of the Indos abandoned you) -

Bai, we beg, the rest us do not need your looking after. Thank You very much.

Another interesting food for thought you may appreciate, Bai, is this :

"Politicians and Diapers need to be changed regularly and because of the same reasons"

Bye Bye Bai,

Anonymous said...

As much as people don't want to admit it, there is still that friction between the Fijians and Indians. That was the reason of the first coup by Rabuka. George Speight confirmed that when he took over parliament.

This is will never go away, and no coup or even the change in the constitution will change it.

Anonymous said...

Ian Simpson
@ radiolucas
RESPONSE IN BOLD ( SORRY, NOT SHOUTING)

"Its right there in the Bible somewhere."
YOU SHALL HAVE LEADERS OF TEN, 100,1K ,10K.
If that's your proposition for a one-party state, I respectfully suggest that you revisit concept for it's social ramifications and think about what happens if you mandate for the "One Party"?

THE RAMIFICATIONS WILL LEAD TO SOCIAL COHESION IN OUR COMMUNITIES AND DO AWAY WITH THE MOST IMMEDIATE RESULT OF THE PRESENT SITUATION, WHICH IS A LOCKSTEP MARCH INTO OUR DIFERENT RACIAL GROUPS, TO PRACTICE AN INSIDIUOS APARTHEID.

Because the next thought should be 'cult of the personality' - which is just as bad, if not far worse, than a party-based west minister system. Think about Kim Jong Il and the others that Frank has had good cause to emulate.

I ASSURE YOU THAT IF YOU LET NATURALLY SELECTED COMMUNITY LEADERS COME FORWARD WITHOUT THE PROCESS OF POLITICS IN PLAY YOU WILL HAVE NO “ CULT OF THE PERSONALITY”


Another salient point is that Japan and many Asian countries usually have a monarchy, social hierarchies and/or caste systems in place - something that would need to be enacted in Fiji to work. But does ANYONE really want that?
WE HAVE A HUGE ABUNDANCE OF SOCIAL HIERARCHIES, TOO MUCH IN FACT, SO I THINK WHAT I AM PROPOSING WILL ALLOW FOR WOMEN AND THE YOUNGER GENERATION TO NOT ONLY PARTICIPATE, BUT WITH THEIR NUMBERS, CONTROL OR INFLUENCE OUTCOMES.

I don't mean to go on the attack - because debate is great - but I really get annoyed with Politicians playing on their personalities rather than their politics. They all do it - the key is how do you minimise it? I just don't see how a one-party state would get rid of it - it would probably exacerbate it.

UNDER A ONE PARTY STATE, THOSE THAT FIND THEMSLEVES ELEVATED TO SERVICE WILL NOT BE POLITICIANS, BUT LEADERS RESPONSIBLE FOR (ALL) THEIR COMMUNITIES WELFARE.
THE STATE CONSITITUION IS THE PARTY CONSITUTION.

THE CHECK AND BALANCE TO THE SYSTEM IS IN MY SUBMISSION TO DECENTRALIZE THE PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION TO DISTRICT GUARDIAN COUNCILS.
THE STATE PARTY WILL BE AN ORGAN OF GOVERNMENT AND UNDER THE DISCIPLINE OF THE DISTRICT GUARDIAN COUNCIL.

The grass is greener said...

Indians trying to exert and gain political and economic control of Fiji? Its still there, its probably even greater now. How many indigenous companies you know turning over at least F$1 million? Fijian Holdings doesn't count with their initial $20m grant and as wadan points out, is essentially an asset and property owning company. No entrepreneurship. At all. Corrupt Siti weileilakeba hiding in PNG basically screwed his own people and filled his pocket, and funded Laisa's follies eg. Shell service Station. the way i see it, fiji is basically f'ed. Educated Fijians want to screw their own people, Indians want economic control, the Muslim brotherhood / sisterhood of khaiyum, Aslam, Hafiz Khan, Shameem and bano have got Fiji by its balls and purse strings. The new Chinese miners are raping the land and Frank like Nero is fiddling while Fiji implodes. So glad i got out when i did. i do feel sorry for my friends and neighbours stuck in what was once a wonderful country.

Pacific in the Media said...

Anon@3.56pm We would've remembered such a contribution if one was made.C4.5

Anonymous said...

Whatever happened to the Chor Chodhari's case?? Is he going to JAIL or not man?? Has he made deals with the AG's Aunty NUR or what??

Has Chodhari made deals with the Judge Gounder - no-one would be least surprised.

Or are AG/ Choro / Nur / Goundar making deals as we speak??

C4.5 plse inform / update us on this choro choduhari gail-going progress please.

Some of us your older readers are desperate to see this choro end up in JAIL in our life-time!! And whilst at it plse also give us more info on the chor's side-kick - Vasonoei!!

Naboro for this Chorwa Chodhari!!

Anonymous said...

Wadan uses Lincoln's characterisation of the American system of government to define democracy as a government of, by, and for the people. Another way to define democracy is 'majority rule, minority rights'. Fiji needs to find its own way to achieving that formula.

Great Britain does have a constitution, but it isn't a single written document. Its true that its Westminster parliamentary model is less commonly practised around the world than the presidential model, which has much to recommend it. But as long as Fiji is ruled by an unlawful despotism, this is no time to change the nation's political system or to discard its constitution. Bainimarama will only exploit the process to accrue more personal power.

Obviously the racial tensions between indigenous and Indo-Fijians haven't dissipated under Bainimarama's rule. They've probably grown worse in many ways, exacerbated by Bainimarama's policies. I fear that the sentiment is growing for a pogrom against the kai idia as soon as the lid lifts, in reaction to the perception that they are milking Fiji under Bainimarama's dictatorship. That would be unfair and a tragedy for all.

Wadan's presentation essentially argues that Indo-Fijians who support Bainimarama are backing the wrong horse. I couldn't agree more. The BOI report indicates that Bainimarama was the black hand behind the 2000 nationalist coup. Bainimarama used the goal of racial equality as one of his many excuses for the 2006 coup, to appeal to the FLP for political legitimacy and to mask his real motives, which were to seize personal power and to avoid arrest for the murders of his CRW prisoners in 2000. His complete disinterest in integrating the RFMF gives the lie to his rhetoric, as does his lack of kai Idia appointments.

Hopefully, Fiji will evolve to a system that transcends race-based politics. It seemed to be headed that way many years ago. Bainimarama's 'one man, one vote' won't achieve it. In today's Fiji, it's actually a prescription for permanent minority status for Indo-Fijians, which is why Chaudhry now opposes it. 

A one-party state is a disastrous idea for Fiji. Such state structures lead to rampant cronyism and corruption, an ossified political culture, and occasionally even totalitarianism. In fact, the two-party system has generally proven itself the best and most stable. A two-party system in Fiji might be communally based at the beginning but would likely become more pluralist over time.

In practice, Fiji is already a one-party state. That party consists of Frank Bainimarama. He would probably like nothing better than to institutionalise his rule with a one-party state. Fiji needs a second party, one that represents the interests of all other Fijians.

s/ Dakuwaqa

Anonymous said...

Bainimarama is a con man..he conned the whole lot of us..He was George speights basketball mate in Lami town,,in fact they all grew up together..the bloody opportunist pig..if he was genuine in eradicating racism he would haif of the military would have to be made up of indo-fijians..haahaa..and the PMs office too..he got you there didnt he..now this is just an exit strategy for him like what Rabuka did..but lets all see to it that he doesnt get away with it this time..

Anonymous said...

NARSEY.can we have a graf that shows all the indians that own all the buildings in all the CDB I all the towns and cities in fiji

Keep The Faith said...

ROFLMAO.

Free press to C4.5 thanks to Fiji Sun and the irrelevant Croc Croz: http://www.fijisun.com.fj/2012/03/26/exposed-2/

Keep it coming amateurs.

Anonymous said...

well said doctor narsey.
fijian wants political power to control fiji always.
we had great leader /govt of the past like Ratu Mara govt and than 2006 sSDL GOVT.PM Qarase multi party cabinet..
How many ministers we have in bai cabinet .
he had big time 1987 coup plotter in his govt kububola/bole.taufa/others.
i hope indian overseas and in fiji will read this.
this shout open their eyes.
also bai texted me and said indian pray to tavoro /satan and are mf .
this is an insult to indian people/god/mums/dad.
i will reveal all this text soon on all website.
bai is racist.he is using indians/fijian armies to cover his ass not to end in prison.
time for fijian and indians to combine and kick this illegal regime /cronies out .
like they did to gadaffi in libya.
wake up people dont be taken for a ride .
god bless fiji people and curse the regime.
rajesh

Anonymous said...

F/T - March 26th 2012

"AFTER a lapse of more than three years, the Fiji Labour Party held its first ever national council meeting on Saturday and it was evident the end of their long wait had been a relief for the members.

FLP leader Mahendra Chaudhry said it was very good to meet again with his fellow party members"

He is at it again folks!! and some people will just not learn...bank accounts in Australia, NZ....public funds lobbying in Harayana etc..Gosh!!

Anonymous said...

why worry about mpc funds.
we should be more worried about 7 billion been spent by this regime .no accounts given to its tax payers.
where is the auditor generals reports.
how much comm they made from this pm and ag taliban and cronies.
they dont have guts to saw those reports and salaries they been paid by mistress bano.
fiji people were promised good acct,transparent govt in 2006 bai.all lies.
sa rauta na liumuri taki.
rajesh

Anonymous said...

Rajesh - please stop with this- you show these so called txts from Bani to everybody in auckland and expect us to believe you - we know that you have just saved your fiji phone number as Banimarama in your NZ phone contacts list and txt from one phone to another to fool people - old habits die hard, remember ANZ Bank and those bank accounts - please leave this forum for some intelligentd dialogue.
BANI and AG will get their fruits on judgement day but not through lies and deceit from people like you, Mara and others - your act of deceit is no better than them - LET GOD JUDGE THEM.

Anonymous said...

Thank you C4.5. Thank you Dr Narsey. It's always good to hear your side of the story. And healthy debate is good for the country.
A few contributions above have been good.
I like to keep things very simple.
The simple fact is Bainimarama is a CONMAN.

He conned the Soldiers ( for Dina Dodonu kei na savasava) and they fell for it.
Why they still allowing him to con them, goodness knows.

He conned the Academics ( I'm fighting corruption) and they all fell in love with Frank and even hgelped him draw up a silly Charter.

He conned the Indians and they fell in love with him(I'm promoting racial-equality. What bullshit!) Now we know that is all crap.

And now he is trying to con Overseas governments, to help fix his debt. How? by giving them what they want ... an Election..(albeit he'll try and save his arse by drawing up a Constitution so that he is always in power)

That's right' it's all very simple. Bai is a conman and he is trying to con everyone just so that he can avoid jail and continue to fill his pockets... but he also wants to travel the world freely ...so he'll give the Overseas govt the Election they crying for.

Meanwhile Fijians suffer.More poverty.More uneducated kids than ever before. What a sad future.

We Fijians must take the bull by the horns and lock this guy up. Lock him up and lock up all who are doing this crap to us, Sharon,Gaytes,Aiyaz, Shameem sisters,Pfilger,Chaudry etc etc etc.

Bai is a conman and all this Constitution bullshit is all a con.

-Valataka na Dina.

Anonymous said...

Rajesh when Bai texted you saying Indo-Fijians worship tevoro/satan and mother fuc****, that shud be a clear indication that the multi-racialism this idiot is trying to project is all bullshit. He is a racist to the bone. I hope all Indo-Fijian brothers and sisters now know the kind of person he is except for the Muslim brotherhood and YP and a handful of others who continue to milk the country giving a little to the dictator and filling up their pockets unashamedly. Thumbs Up to 1997 constituion.

Anonymous said...

To tholse ridiculing Qarase and Chaudhary, please think again. I believe Qarase and Chaudhary put together are still lesser evils than this idiotic dictator. Qarase and Chaudhary have not: ordered the murder of any Fiji citizen, not paid themselves $700,000 salary whilst they were PM, never stolen public money owned by hardworking taxpayers and banked them overseas, never achieved political power at gunpoint, never tortured anyone and women for that matter, never paid themselves any outstanding leave pay spanning over 30 years which should have been forfeited according to government financial rules and regulations, never been drunk and disorderly shitting in their pants in the process, never text anyone and sworn at them like Bai did to Rajesh ridiculing his race, never been so inhumane in the treatment of civil servants by mass sacking those who had legal binding service contracts and cutting them short in their career with the 55 age mandatory retirement policy, employing their close relatives in top posts in govt and govt-owned entities, clinched big business deals with overseas companies and loans from Chinese without proper due dilligence with sidekick Khaiyum, sold mahogany under suspicious circumstances used a battle geared army and marched with them on an intimidating tour of Suva's streets etc, ruled Fiji after only attaining a poor Fiji Junior exam pass and administering the economy as Finance Minister with that qualification.

Anonymous said...

Anon 11.33 might I add the strife of pensioners when Bai callously reduced as much as more than half their pensions unilaterally and indiscriminately.

Maxie said...

I came straight to comments as the article is like reading a book. And guess even the comments is like reading another book!!lol.

Fijiana said...

Dr. Narsey I would not call you a "Failed Politician" but rather feel that you were way ahead of the time. You are the best person that can steer Fiji's economy back to normalcy. I am in process of starting a new progressive political party. Sure would love to have you on my team and be rest assured that you will be the Minister of Finance".

Anonymous said...

There will be no peace as long as the Fijians continue to be marginalised in their own country. It is the Indians that is so opposed to preferrential treatment in favour of the Fijians. Wadans research higlighted that the Europeans kept the Fijians in the village thus effectively stopping them from economic activity. So, why is it wrong to provide affirmative action to accelerate the Fijians partcipation in economic activity? The attitude of those who are opposing affirmative actions is indicating that they are content to keep the Fijians out of economic activities.

Anonymous said...

The RFMF is 99% Fijians because Fijian Indians
can't pass through the Military recruitment physical test.They are not tough enough!I know cause when i joined the RFMF some years ago,for our 3 months training;there were 10 Indian boys,5 Kailoma boys and 25 Fijians boys recruited.Out of these Groups all 10 Indian boys quit for various reasons. The 5 Kailoma boys were fantastic and graduated along with all the Fijian boys after the 3 months training. 2 or 3 of the Kailoma boys were so good that were the first to get recruited by the British Army.-Comment edited:C4.5
March 28, 2012 10:54 AM

Anonymous said...

ONE PARTY STATE:
IAN SIMPSON, TAVEUNI
RESPONSE TO S/DAKUWAQA IN BOLD.
@ s/dakuwaqa

A one-party state is a disastrous idea for Fiji.
AS OPPOSED TO THE REALITY OF THE PAST DISASTROUS 40 YEARS OF RACIAL APARTHEID, COUPS AND DICTATORSHIP.

Such state structures lead to rampant cronyism and corruption, an ossified political culture, and occasionally even totalitarianism.
CHECKS AND BALANCES CAN BE DESIGNED AND THE OPTION TO CHANGE AVAILABLE VIA A REFERENDUM.

In fact, the two-party system has generally proven itself the best and most stable.
ONLY IN STATES WITH A PREDOMINANCE OF ONE RACE AND CULTURE. A DISASTER WHERE THESE CONDITIONS ARE NOT IN PLACE.

A two-party system in Fiji might be communally based at the beginning but would likely become more pluralist over time.

I MAKE THE ASSUMPTION YOU ARE WELL EDUCATED AND IN ALL PROBABILITY HAVE A GOOD JOB AND THE FAMILY IS OK JAKE. I AM IN DISPARE FOR THE THOUSANDS OF OUR YOUTH WHO MUST WAIT FOR YOUR EVOLUTION OF PLURALISM OVER TIME. ANOTHER 40 YEARS?

In practice, Fiji is already a one-party state.
FIJI IS PRESENTLY UNDER A DICTATORSHIP, NOT A ONE PARTY STATE.


That party consists of Frank Bainimarama.
ONE MAN A PARTY NOT MAKE.

He would probably like nothing better than to institutionalise his rule with a one-party state.
OBVIUOSLY! AND HE WILL, IF PEOPLE DO NOT GET INVOLVED TO CONTROL THE DIRECTION. IF HE BETRAYS US, THAT IS HIS CHOICE. TIME WILL TELL AND GOD WILL JUDGE.

Fiji needs a second party, one that represents the interests of all other Fijians.
WHO IS THE FIRST PARTY?
WHO ARE ALL THE OTHER FIJIANS?

AND ALL OTHER FIJIANS ARE THE PEOPLE WHO ARE IN PERPETUAL OPPOSITION? PERPETUAL HUMILATION! PERPETUAL DISCARDS!

WHY MUST A TINY COMMUNITY, STATE, SUCH AS FIJI PERSIST IN DENYING, REJECTING MANY OF OUR CITIZENS A CHANCE TO CONTRIBUTE TO OUR NATION.


JUST ONE EXAMPLE IS DR. WARDEN NARSEY. HE MIGHT AS WELL HOWL AT THE MOON FOR ALL THE DIFFERENCE HE HAS MADE TO FIJI, DESPITE IDEAS HE HAS PUBLISHED, THAT IF IMPLEMENTED MAY HAVE CREATED THOUSANDS OF JOBS.


IN PRACTICE, THE TWO PARTY SYSTEM WE HAVE INHERITED FROM BRITIAN HAS PROVEN TO BE IMPOTENT AGAINST THE BUREAUCRACY IN FIJI. DUE TO RACIAL AND SOCIAL STRUCTURES THAT CAME INTO PLAY AT INDEPENDECE, THESE FACTORS, CREATED AN EXTREMELY WEAK EXECUTIVE, WHICH HAS ALLOWED STATE STRUCTURES TO DOMINATE, CREATING RAMPANT CRONYISM, CORRUPTION AND AN OSSIFIED POLITICAL CULTURE AND EVEN TOTALITARIANISM.

I BELIEVE THAT A ONE PARTY STATE DESIGNED WITH CHECKS AND BALANCES CAN GIVE US A SHOT AT TRUE DEMOCRACY, A RATHER TERRIFYING THOUGHT FOR MANY, NO DOUBT.


I BELIEVE, WE , THE CITIZENS OF FIJI, NEED A PROJECT, A COMMON PROJECT THAT WE ALL CAN PARTICIPATE IN, A NATIONAL EFFORT AT NATION BUILDING THAT EVERY BODY HAS OWNERSHIP IN.

THE RISK: MINISCULE.

THE BENEFIT: WE BECOME ONE HARMONIUOS NATION AND PEOPLE

Democrat said...

One party states are great. look at North Kora, Burma and Cuba. All the people are equal(equally poor).

Anonymous said...

ONE PARTY STATE:
Ian Simpson, Taveuni

North Korea & Burma + Fiji = Military Junta's in control.

Cuba actually teaches some lessons. Cubans are not starving!They have the highest doctor to people ratio in the world.
Since the withdrawal of Soviet support they have developed community urban biological farming systems that have been an eye opener to the world.

They may be equally poor, a valid observation, but in our unsustainable comsumer driven societes there is a movement to adopting a "happiness" quotant.

Butan has already taken the lead on this.

Phycoligist prove that " manufactured happiness is as genuine and valid as natural happiness" and also that " we are less happy with more choice"

So you want more stuff and less happiness or more happiness and less stuff.

Kinda gives reason to why Fijians voted happiest people in the world.
Certainly not the most accumalative people in the world.
I wonder where Cubans sit on the happiness scale.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Simpson, I appreciate your comments. I really do. It’s good to discuss ideas, especially about the best path for Fiji, especially at this potential crossroads in her history.

A single party state is usually evidence of authoritarian or dictatorial rule. You’re entitled to your own opinion (it’s a free country, after all – ha!), but except for Frank Bainimarama and his die-hard supporters, I doubt many Fijians think the country needs more authoritarianism or dictatorship.

The problems with Fiji’s past 40 years are hardly due to its lack of single-party rule. Countries with single-party rule also have their share of race problems, coups and dictatorships. Or do you think that China, North Korea, Vietnam, and Cuba, for example, are not dictatorships? Perhaps you think China is a place of racial harmony? Many Tibetans, Uighurs, and indigenous Taiwanese will not agree.

Your assertion that a two-party system is a “disaster” in countries with racial and cultural diversity simply isn’t supported by the facts. In the most salient example of a stable, essentially two-party system, the United States, look at how the Irish and the Cubans have flourished politically. Look at the influence there of the Jews, the Hispanics, and yes, the African-Americans. To what disasters do you refer? If you mean that President Obama is a disaster, then giving him the reins over a single-party state probably wouldn’t be the solution.

Pluralism often does take time to develop. Attitudes have to change, and that seldom happens over night. But organic change is genuine and lasting, while change imposed from the top through the coercive power of the state is often false and ephemeral.

A one-party state does not equal a dictatorship, but most single-part states today are, in fact, dictatorships, and this is not a coincidence. True, one man a party does not make, but the point is that Bainimarama is now a law unto himself, and he is using the RFMF as a political organ that operates much like a party.

Even you concede that Bainimarama would seek to institutionalise his rule with a one-party state. Why, then, even promote the idea of a single party state? I wouldn’t want Qarase and Chaudhry heading such a state -- how much worse a traitorous thug like Bainimarama?

He’s already shown he’s not going to let people get involved in any meaningful way, and he’s already betrayed us, repeatedly.

The first party I refer to is Bainimarama. The second party is everyone else. You make my case. With Bainimarama in control of a political system built around the concept of a single-party state, those in opposition to his rule would be relegated to opposition in a perpetual political wilderness, where their views and talents would count for naught. And Wadan Narsey is, indeed, one such example of a talent that could be better utilized. The societies that are more conducive to free discourse by the Narseys of this world are two- or multi-party democracies, not one-party states.

Fiji does suffer from bureaucratism, but bureaucratism actually tends to flourish under the centralism of a one-party state. Fiji’s bigger problem is an over-sized military led by treasonous rogues. All of the problems we’ve listed are only magnified in a one-party system, principally because no second party is allowed to hold the ruling party accountable. Fiji obviously needs other checks and balances, but one of the most potent is a legal and vigorous opposition party.

The citizens of Fiji already have a project. It is the country’s economic, social and spiritual development through free laws and institutions. We just need more people to get with the programme.

s/ Dakuwaqa