|Fiji water gets the Presidential stamp|
Khaiyum’s uncle accountant Zarin Khan behind Magic Mountain Springs (Fiji) Ltd to extract bottled water in Fiji.
The late Ratu Ovini Bokini and Tavua businessman Rajendra Kant Patel other shareholders
|Hounded: David Roth|
In January of this year I asked the question: who owns Magic Mountain Springs (Fiji) Ltd, and promised to reveal all soon. In the same investigation I disclosed how Fiji Water and its chief executive David Roth were hounded by the illegal regime to make way for Magic Mountain to open a bottled water facility in Rakiraki.
Well, whom else do you think owns Magic Mountain? Yes, the dictator’s “oppressed and downtrodden” Indo-Fijians - the “poor” Khaiyum clan! Since the 2006 treasonous coup, the family have used Aiyaz Sayed Khaiyum’s status as illegal Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Anti-Corruption, Public Enterprises, Communications, Civil Aviation, Tourism, Industry and Trade to further their business empire, with aunty Noor Bano Ali acting as pay mistress to the illegal regime of dictator Frank Bainimarama and her nephew Khaiyum.
On the subject of payroll, let me make it absolutely clear that I am not on the payroll of Fiji Water. Many of the readers will recall that when the first instalment came out, the pro-regime detractors claimed that me and Ratu Epeli Ganilau, who as then acting Prime Minister and Defence Minister had refused to deport Roth out of Fiji, were on the Fiji Waters payroll, hence my investigative piece on Magic Mountain.
For example, see(http://www.coupfourandahalf.com/2012/01/sources-jostling-behind-scene-over.html: “Anonymous said: Victor Lal, how much have Fiji Water paid you so far? Can Firca/RBF go through Fiji Water books to determine and publicise this. The people of Fiji must know about these self serving “scoop” journalists who will compromise the national interest and fill their pockets.”
However, one of these days I will be revealing how much Aliz Pacific - the mother and father company of Khaiyum’s uncle and aunty - have stolen from the taxpayers of Fiji – for writing out those pay cheques to the illegal Ministers and having financial fingers in other post-coup ventures – details passed onto me from their very own accountancy office. They can criminally swindle thousands of dollars of taxpayers money but they will not be able to hide from the long arm of the law, if and when, Fiji returns to democratic rule.
One may also ask why, for example, the dictator is never seen smiling with his own pay cheque from Aunty Bano Ali, for he is quick to smile with cheques donated to him for other purposes.
Meanwhile, in November 2011 the people of Fiji were told that an American company was expected to open a bottled water facility in Rakiraki soon. According to the illegal Bainimarama-Khaiyum regime, Fiji 480 Holdings Limited along with Magic Mountain has been granted a lease to set up the facility at Vunitogoloa – just kilometres away from the Fiji Water bottling plant.
Magic Mountain, the illegal regime told us, is a locally owned company with various businesses having invested into the venture. The source of water is at Nananu village. It is anticipated that the new facility will be bigger than the Fiji Water plant and will provide competition. The new plant – to be established within the next 12 months – is expected to provide employment to surrounding villages. So the reports ran in Fiji.
Who owns Magic Mountain Springs (Fiji) Ltd?
Magic Mountain Springs (Fiji) Ltd (MMSFL) has the following persons as directors: Zarin Khan (chartered accountant), Rajen Kant Patel (company director), Ratu Ovini Bokini (company director; deceased 15 January 2009) and Syed Asad Ali Kazime (American). Is Kazime (also spelt Kajmie) behind the so-called American company which is expected to open the bottle water facility in Rakiraki. He states his address a 175 Moore Park Road, Thousand Oaks, California, 91360, USA.
On 4 September 1998 Zarin Khan (f/n Jaffar Khan) informed the Registrar of Companies that “Magic Mountain Springs (Fiji) Ltd has this day been incorporated under the Companies Act and that the Company is limited”. Signing off as Director/Secretary (and presenting the details through his BDO Zarin Ali, Chartered Accountants & Consultants), he informed the ROC that the registered office of the company was situated at Level 8, Dominion House, Thomson St, Suva.
The other director was the late Ratu Ovini Bokini, the Tui Tavua and former chairman of the Great Council of Chiefs during the 2006 treasonous coup. The object of the company was “to carry on in Fiji and elsewhere the business of extracting, bottling and marketing natural spring water and producing, bottling and marketing other beverages and all activities normally associated and ancillary thereto including at its sole discretion the manufacture of bottles and associated packaging for the business or for sale to third parties”. The two, Khan and Bokini had taken out one share each.
Incidentally, on 4 September 1998, the day Khan had notified the ROC of Bokini’s directorship, Justice Sadal had ordered that the Tavua chief’s case be remitted to the Magistrate’s Court for preliminary inquiry to be “held without delay”. Bokini was facing 32 Counts of Official Corruption contrary to Section 106(a) of the Penal Code and 32 alternative Counts of Fraudulent Conversion of Property contrary to Section 279(1)(c)(ii) of the Penal Code Cap. 17, all these charges first came before the Resident Magistrate's Court at Suva on 22nd November 1996. Bokini faced charges of official corruption arising from investigations into the National Bank of Fiji scandal. He was represented by the recently disbarred Ba lawyer Dr Mohammed Samshu-din Sahu Khan.
Meanwhile, on 8 September 1998, Rajendra Kant Patel (f/n Hathi Bhai Patel) the Indo-Fijian Tavua businessman and a close family friend of Bokini became the third director of MMSFL. Patel reflected on their friendship when Bokini died in 2009: “It’s unbelievable for me and my family,” Patel said, adding he struck up a friendship with Ovini in 1976 because their parents were friends. “We were very close and this is indeed a great loss for Tavua and for Fiji. I will always remember my chief and would like to specially remember him as a humble and great leader, always ready to offer guidance on many things. I was never too busy to answer to Ratu’s needs during those challenging times and they were opportunities I was happy to provide for him and his family. I went to pay my tributes to the family this week and the house is silent. There is something missing there…”
In the above eulogy, Patel had not mentioned the business water venture, and other business partnerships. On 3 May 1999 Zarin Khan informed the ROC that “At an extraordinary general meeting of the members of the company duly convened on the 3th day of May, 1999 held at the office of H.B. Patel Brothers Ltd (owned by Rajend Patel family), a special Resolution set below was duly passed – Authorization of Share Allotment – That the directors be and are hereby empowered to allot and to issue at their sole and absolute discretion 22,500,000 shares in the capital of the company to the seed funders, project promoters, project consultants, facilitators of debt and equity funder and the permanent financier of the company project”.
Those holding ordinary shares besides individuals included Navakatidro Development Company Ltd (Tavua, 1,125,000 shares; Bila Development & Investment Ltd, 8th Floor Dominion House, Suva, 225,000 shares; Corporate Agents Ltd, Suva, 1,125,000 shares; Tavua Holdings Ltd, 300,000 shares; Ramapa Proprietary Ltd, Tavua, 1,125,000 and 225,000 shares respectively).
Zarin Khan and Sunil Deo Sharma owned Corporate Agents Ltd, which was formed in 1993. Sharma is a business accountant partner of Zarin Khan and Nur Bano Ali. Tavua Holdings Ltd, formed in 1998, listed its directors as Bokini, Zarin Khan and Rajendra Kant Patel. Navakatidro Development, formed in 1996, had Eroni Kito, Lemeki Tareguci Rasiga, Ratu Inoke Baleisuva Bokini and Ratu Tavo Bale Bokini as directors.
By 1999, the Bokinis were sole directors: Ratu Ovini, Tavo Bale, Inoke, Totivi Dakaniviti, Kelera Vakawale, and Sereima Lalavanua. In 1998 Bila Development and Investment Company was owned by Sairusi Tagivetaua and Eroni Kitou, of Tavua, who listed their occupations as businessmen. On 15 June 1996 Kitou and Lemeki Tareguci had resigned their directorships from Navakatidro Development, and were replaced by the Bokini family. The company’s financial affairs were managed by BDO Zarin Ali (the aunty and uncle accountant team). Sahu Khan and Sahu Khan represented the company’s legal interests.
By February 2004, MMSF had a fourth director in the person of Dr Shailesh Khatri (f/n Devidas Guludas), an interventional cardiologist, who gave his address as Suite 4, 4th Floor, Pacific Private Clinic, 123 Narang Street, Southport Qld, 4215, Australia. A year later, in 2005, the Return of Allotments showed those holding allotted shares as followers: Navakartidro (2,025,000), Ramapa (2,025,000), Corporate Agents (Fiji) Ltd (2,025,000) and Syed Asad Ali Kazmie of California (1,800,000). In August 2005 Khatri was removed from Magic Mountain and Kazmie was appointed in his place. Another company, Travelex (Fiji) Ltd (a client of BDO Zarin Ali) of Varoli St, Ba, was allocated 406,000 shares in 2005. The directors were listed as follows: Devidas Gulabdas (f/n Gulabdas Hargovind), Puspawati Nagindas Vallabh and Akeneta Koyanasau, who resigned on 18 February 2004.
Meanwhile, as I mentioned in the first instalment, the treasonist 2006 coup, gave the Khaiyum clan, the Bokinis’ and the Patels a great chance to make a go for the control of Fiji’s bottled water. But, first, the illegal Attorney-General and Minister of a million illegal portfolios, had to vilify Fiji Water, with his uncle Zarin Khan hiding in the background.
The public statements had been cleverly left to Rajendra Kant Patel, who has been described as the boss of Magic Mountain, when we know from the records now that he is only one of the directors. In 2008, according to a Fiji Times report, the landowners wanted the ownership of the site of the proposed water bottling plant returned to them before work started. Yavusa Nakorosago of Nananu, Ra, wanted discussions with the interim Government and the Native Land Commission to correct what they claimed was an earlier mistake by the NLC.
Nananu Development Company secretary Vasiti Ritova said yavusa Nakorosago felt it was wronged when the then Native Land Reserve Commissioner, Ilaitia Caginavanua, awarded the land overlooking their village to mataqali Matalevu of Vunitogoloa.
The land had been leased by Magic Mountains (Springs) Fiji Limited.
Ritova said the 240-hectare site included the location of their original village, burial grounds, fishing area and food gardens. She said the decision was made in 1996 after an NLC sitting in Vunitogoloa, where the members of Yavusa Nakorosago told Caginavanua that Matalevu could not have owned that land because they were part of Vunitogoloa and Raviravi District and not Nananu. Vunitogoloa is about 20 kilometres from the disputed land.
“How can some people who live three mountains, two rivers and four villages away from us can come and claim what is right there under our nose?” she asked. “We, the members of yavusa Nakorosago, are left to work on this oversight ourselves and we will now renew our call to the Government and the NLC to have another meeting so that we can undo this very key decision that was made without proper consultation with all members of three mataqali in Nananu (yavusa Nakorosago) as far as the new spring water project is concerned.
Magic Mountain Springs boss Rajendra Patel, according to the Fiji Times, had said he would not comment on that issue. And Ritova, despite repeated e-mails to her from me, has responded to my queries. In 2007 Caginavanua’s contract was not renewed. The then Interim Fijian Affairs Minister Ratu Epeli Ganilau said the Board of NLTB decided against the renewal because Caginavanua was under investigation for alleged corruption. “The Reserve Commissioner even though his contract has lapsed...the Board has also not renewed his contract, he is also being investigated by the committee of Colonel Kurusiga on some of the allegations leveled against him during his term as Reserve Commissioner,” said Ganilau.
In March 2011, Patel was again in the news, with no sign of Zarin Khan. “This one man sorted out an 11-year issue and brought about unity among Ra villagers, paving the way for these water bottling projects. I am also thankful to the Native Land Trust Board for their assistance in these projects”. Patel was praising the Commissioner Western Commander Joeli Cawaki. The Fiji Times had reported that to enable the new developments, the Bainimarama-Khaiyum Government had solved an 11-year impasse between feuding landowners at Yaqara, “a truce which will be set in stone when work on the two water bottling projects begin in August this year (2011).
One factory, located at the site of extraction in Nananu Village in Ra, is a joint venture between Tavua businessman Rajendra Patel, United States investors and the people of Nananu. The other plant, also located at the extraction site will be a joint venture between the yavusa Mali of Naseyani, Unit Trust of Fiji, a subsidiary of Fijian Holdings Limited and an, as yet undisclosed, United States investor. We wonder who that investor is – Syed Asad Ali Kasmie?
Rajendra Kant Patel told the press in 2011 that he was waiting for financiers to arrive in the country later “this month (March 2011) before elaborating further on the Magic Mountain project in Nananu. He did not inform the nation that the water company had yet to pay rent arrears – a year later, in January 2011, it was the Taukei Lands Trust Board reported that Magic Mountain has only recently paid “rent arrears” but has yet to commence development in accordance with the terms of its lease.
The Fiji Democracy Now blog noted: “Cheating landowners of rent – what else would we expect from the Khaiyum Klan?”
There is no mention of the name of Zarin Khan when it comes to the Magic Mountain Springs (Fiji) Ltd. But no matter how deep the Khaiyum clan decides to dive, they will be fished out of water.
A secret report prepared by BLM Consulting for Fiji 480 Holdings Limited can be seen on the following sites, with a plan to contribute $25,000 to a village church and a cross.