#header-inner img {margin: 0 auto !important; #header-inner {text-align: Center ;} Fiji Coupfourpointfive: SDL: Commission must be given 'freedom' to represent the people

Monday, November 5, 2012

SDL: Commission must be given 'freedom' to represent the people

Muddied history: Bainimarama and Madraiwiwi
It took a few days but Yash Ghai has defended his decision to appoint Joni Madraiwiwi as a consultant.

Ghai has taken refuge behind the Constitution Commission Decree for the unpopular decision saying it allows the Commission to seek the assistance of experts on specialised issues.

He also says none of the local commissioners have the practical or academic experience of law, including local law, it needs for its work and that Madrawiwi's appointment was not hidden but neither is it in the habit of announcing appointments. 

Relevant quote from Ghai's statment: "The lack of submissions from relevant government bodies has made expert guidance on law more necessary, a task that Ratu Joni fulfilled admirably."
Ghai: Standing by Madraiwiwi
Getting Madraiwiwi on board as a short term consultant has caused the biggest stink yet in the work of the Commission. 

Frank Bainimarama has taken strong exception because Madraiwiwi was part of the Bau delegation that called for Fiji to be declared a Christian state.

Bainimarama has now tinkered with the Constituent Assembly decree to muzzle the power of the Constitution and it may not end there.

The regime will probably will make much of the fact, too, that Ghai has also admitted the Commission knew Madraiwiwi was intending to make his own submission and it did not consider this a conflict of interest.

Bainimarama is also unlikely to buy Ghai's argument that Madraiwiwi, a high chief, is a traditional leader and appeared before the Commission in that capacity. 

He was also the country's last democratically recognised vice-president, nominated by Josefa Iloilo and, of course, removed by the 2006 regime.

Ghai statement again: "Fiji is a small society and people function in several capacities and contexts. Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi is not only a legal practitioner with some years' experience, but a Fijian who has served in the public service and the judiciary as well as on the boards of civil society organisations concerned with human rights."

Truth be known no leader of significance in Fiji today is unsoiled or 'neutral' enough to be acceptable to the regime and those of us wanting democracy. Many who would've been suitable for such roles have left the country driven away by the polarised politics and the ongoing coups.

Some sense, though, today in a small statement from the SDL Party calling for the Constitution Commssion to be given what it describes as 'the ideal work environment to achieve their objective.'

"Their task is an important one and it is only fair that they be allowed liberty to carry out their work. The regime must respect the Constitution Commission's work and give them the fitting work freedom to carry out their role which is ultimately to produce to us a Constitution that well represents the wishes of our people."

Editor's Note: See our Facebook page for the full Yash Ghai statement on Madraiwiwi's appointment


Anonymous said...

Bainimarama is scared that Rt Joni might become too popular and become President instead of him.
Watch him manouvre and try and put Rt Joni in jail.

-Valataka na Dina.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Has the Banana and his stupid AG published their salary yet I think not?
Nice to see everyone can freely put their views ha ha.
Hope the tourists stop coming to the unfriendly islands only way to stop the Banana.

Anonymous said...

Ghai and team including the NGO's and political parties he has been having dinners, seminars and trying to own the process must first and foremost understand who is in charge of the country now. Yes it is the Republic of Fiji Military Forces whether you like it or not. If the military doesn't like what you doing Ghai you will be sent packing with your NGO's, politicians and your Joni Madraiwiwi. Madraiwiwi is a chief of Bau and Tailevu and not of Fiji so Ghai try and understand Fiji first or you will be manipulated by those so called chiefs, NGO's and politicians who have brought us to where we were in the year 2000 and 2006. Ghai if you think you are Fiji's democratic saviour be advised that you can be sent packing at any time.

Anonymous said...

How can Bau call for a Christian state when their chiefs are screwing left right and centre. Just look at the kids the have from different mothers. They can't even select a vunivalu which shows they can't even work together .... How do you expect them to follow Christ?

SEMI MEO said...

Well..just proves right what the 99.9% of Fiji Citizens were maintaining all along; that this process is probably the only credible pathway to sanity and democratic rule!!

Of all people…the SDL has come into Professor Ghai’s defence…well…uh..in defence of this very process.

As if all members of the Commission are neutral in their views…3 former Cabinet Ministers and a sexist extremist !!

Our advise to my tauvu Rear Admiral is to ease off a bit with the ping pond game with this Tanzanian Indian professor.

.get the constitution done with..and let’s campaign vigorously for our representatives in the long awaited democratic Parliament…

Some of us may just stand against the Rear Admiral in the seat of his choice in the 2014 elections…any takers??..uh..or we still in the Taveuni busride??

Kai Bau said...

Yes you are right how come Pakistan declaring Muslim state when they kill their own kind........Most of the muslim countries are calling temselves muslim state but yet they kill,rape.murder and steal.......wather its christian state or peculiar state it will never stop those habits which the Fijians like Meo derive it from mother land.....

Coup 4.5 said...

Talking about initiatives and people representation, Luvei Viti has an open letter regarding the recent decision by the Carribean and Pacific countries to allow Fiji to chair a key committee hearing.

luvei-viti-thinktank-at-vuw[] [Na Dina 'Fiji Truth'.] 10/26/2012 03:13:00 PM
Fiji Truth [Na Dina] fijitruthcom@gmail.com via googlegroups.com

Oct 26 (10 days ago)

to luvei-viti-thi.
Below is an Open Letter specifically to EU-ACP Leaders and other Super Powers to give Heed to our Island Voices in the South Seas Island of Fiji. All is not well as this Diktatorship is presenting to the world.

'Na Dina' Fiji Truth will Prevail in the end.
Fiji Truth Commission Movement.


TO : EU-ACP VIA European Union/United Kingdom/United States of America/New Zeland/Australia/Japan/China/United Nation and Fiji People in Fiji and Globally.

Ni sa Bula vinaka, Namaste, No’oia, Kia ora.

We do not condone Fiji’s illegal regime being given to chair the recent EU-ACP Ministerial Meeting held today 26 October 2012 as per Fiji’s Ministry of Information Press Release of Thursday 25/10/12 noted in our exhibits below. Under Article 17 of the Joint ACP-EU Parliamentary Assembly item Nos.2 stipulates that " As a Consultative body shall be to promote Democratic process through dialogue & consultation. Facilitate greater understanding between people of EU & ACP & raise Public awareness of development issues....."

It is our great disappointment as members of the Fiji public to note the above Article has been ignored by the EU-ACP group and promoted the current Fiji Diktatorship Regime to chair the above meeting schedule for Friday October 26 as per the latest news release by Ministry of Information Fiji this afternoon. The people of Fiji have not enjoyed a life of freedom since the coup of 2006. They have continuously been under the Public Emergency regulations even though we have been told PER been lifted.

more to follow

Ganesh said...

Bainimarama or Semi Meo, I can't tell who is the bigger idiot!

Bainimarama should be glad that Ghai sought out Ratu Joni's views. It gives Ghai's so-called constitutional dialogue more credibility. Of course, as Dakuwaqa always pointed out, the dialogue is really a monologue, and neither is it constitutional.

Most of us know that Bainimarama will pressure Ghai to ignore most of the views he's heard from the various sectors of society and instead simply obey the Commodore's supreme will.

Which brings us to Semi Meo. What 99.9 percent of the Fijian people are you talking about? You've been sniffing too much ammonia. As can be seen from this blog and elsewhere, obviously many Fijians have no faith whatsoever in this latest phony process -- and for good reason, as it's just the latest in a series of phony processes upon which the regime has embarked but against which it later reneged.

Yes, Ghai can be sent packing any time, but if he were smart, he'd leave now, of his own volition.

Coup 4.5 said...

Luvei letter continued

The Fijians and their Chiefs, their lands and oceans have been used as an excuse to further the regimes ‘economic pipe-dreams’. No consultations have been accorded to the Indigenous Fijians and their Chiefs for how their land should be dealt with or shared or used for economic gains. The word ‘colonialism’ is being used as a catch phrase to trap the thinking of all our Indigenous Fijians for the sake of justifying the actions of this illegal regime in Fiji headed by Bainimarama and Khaiyum Saiyed as his legal advisor.
We have added an expert view from Dr Jones of Bauer Institute on Fijian Land Issues to give you a glimpse of the lies and claims Bainimarama is now putting that the state is the Landlord of lands in Fiji and he is the ultimate authority as the Ministry responsible. Who put him there in the first place? No one. He assumed power at the point of the guns and and we are now demanding like others who are experts on Fiji matters that he return to the barracks with his army co-horts and give Fiji back to the people to decide a Care Taker Government to take Fiji to the next 2014 election.
As noted by many submission to the Fiji Constitution Commission that several quarters of the Fiji Community in Fiji are not being given the due process of agreeing nor being consulted on a Democratic level as the case should be. We therefore ask that first and foremost Fiji people's voices must be heard on all levels in a Democratic manner and not at the point of guns.

Finally, we request EU-ACP and all those leaders who are sitting on the sidelines to re-examine its position on Fiji and give due consideration to the sufferings & loss of freedom as well as livelihood over the last 6 years since the regime took over after 2006 todate. Fiji needs Caretaker
Government. As noted of late the election of 2014 as articulated by per Sitiveni Rabuka's speech via Stuff News NZ that election is now unlikely.

In support of the Big 4 Political Parties in Fiji namely: Soqosoqo ni Duavata Ni Lewe Ni Vanua SDL, Fiji Labour Party, United Peoples Party; National Federation Party, The Great Council of Chiefs and the people in Fiji including the different Enthic background and Religious Groups there are in Fiji as well as Civil Societies Group and Non Profit Groups and the Grassroots people through their various submissions to the Fiji Constitutional Commission we would like our Fiji Citizens Concerns to be taken seriously by all the big powers noted in this open letter.
Thank you.

“Vinaka vakalevu”
Initiated by Na Dina: Fiji Truth Commission Movement & other Leaders of Various Fiji Democratic Movements Globally;
Vilisi Nadaku – USA; Raratabu Vatu – UK; Nemai Vucago –NZ; Elisapeci Samanunu -NZ

Coup 4.5 said...

Luvei Viti letter

Various Exhibits Attached;
Excerpts from Blog Coup 4.5 on Submission by Fiji’s Big 4 Political Parties; Soqosoqo ni Duavata Ni Lewe Ni Vanua SDL, Fiji Labour Party, United Peoples Party; National Federation Party,

Fiji's key parties lobby Pacific Leaders Forum
Qarase out of the picture but SDL, FLP and UPP fighting on.
The country's main four parties have taken their concerns to the region's biggest gathering of Pacific leaders, the Pacific Forum.

IN THE MIX: NFP and Raman Singh (middle)
In an 11 page submission, SDL, the Fiji Labour Party, the National Federation Party and the United Peoples Party tell Forum leaders 'there is a misconception in some quarters that Fiji is truly on the road back to democracy and constitutional rule.'

The parties discuss the current Constitutional process but detail shortcomings and say the regime should not be driving the process, reiterating that the only sure way back to democracy is via the 2009 Fiji Court of Appeal decision.

The parties say the illegal president can still appoint a caretaker Prime Minister and Cabinet, establish a political dialogue forum, and set up Electoral Commission, the Boundaries Commission and Supervisors Commission.
MISCONCEPTIONS: Julia Gillard and John Key

They also question the make-up of the Constituent Assembly, and military representation.

The parties also tell the Forum they take exception to the restrictions that have been put on those who want to seek election, highlighting the jailing of the SDL party leader, Laisenia Qarase, and the pending trial of FLP leader Mahendra Chaudhry.

And they say the regime must not be allowed immunity at any cost.

"We have very strong reservations on this issue. Perpetrators of the coup must face the full brunt of the law and be held accountable.

"By providing blanket immunity in the past we have taken away the penal and punitive element from such heinous crimes and have simply encouraged more treasonous activities. If Fiji is to counter this coup culture immunities in constitutions have to go."

Read More;
Preliminary Response from an academic expert on Indigenous Issues; Dr Peter Jones on Fijian Lands.
I have read over the speech. As with all speeches, it fails to clarify many things for the sake of trying to please all parties. Here are my initial notes/concerns:

1) It is stated that TLTB is responsible for ensuring that iTaukei lands are accessible to development, and that this is a good thing. However, what if the Vanua do not want to develop the land, but preserve it for biodiversity, natural beauty, as a reserve/national park? It sounds like the TLTB would be against this, which it should not be. The role of the TLTB is not to decide what is best for Fiji, its land, and its people, but to facilitate discussions and potential agreements (and eventual leases) between landowners and those who seek to use that land.

2) As stated, "The TLTB provides leases for agriculture, housing, tourism, education, health services and industry. This plays a major role in growing our economy. And that development benefits not only the iTaukei, but every Fijian." This is only partly true. Development of land is not the only means to growing an economy. Eventually all land will be developed in Fiji. What then? How will the economy work under this model when there is no new land to develop? Again, there are alternatives - ecotourism, biodiversity reserves, etc. If all of the land is developed, will tourists still want to come to Fiji?

Coup 4.5 said...

That is Fiji's #2 source of foreign exchange, just behind sugar production. Tourism will exceed the sugar industry if the EU stops its subsidies, which may happen soon. Perhaps this is why there is talk of liberalization of land leases and use, as it becomes clear that the sugar industry is slowly dying. Now is the time to plan for the future, and development of land is only one option of many.

3) Again, you can see this in the statement "more land needs to be made available for productive use." How one defines "productive" should be up to the landowners, not the government or TLTB.

4) It is stated that administrative fees will be reduced by 5% in the next year. How will that money be made up? Obviously, by money made from the leasing of new lands. This may be a sneaky way to get landowners to agree to leases, as they will see more money in their pockets (initially) because of reduced administrative fees. A better alternative would be to have those who lease the land pay the administrative fees, and not the landowners.

5) It is stated that an effort needs to be made to make sure landowners want to continue to release their lands. I do not know if it has anything to do with difficulties in collecting rent, which is implied in the speech. My guess is that landowners do not want to renew leases because they are not happy with them, and they are excessively long. Most leases are between 30 and 99 years. Longer and longer leases will continue to be favored as that is how the government can entice foreign investments with a guarantee to land rights for a certain number of years. Do landowners fully understand the leases?

6) It is admitted that the database or records of landowners is out of date and inaccurate. It is essential that landowners make sure their lands are acknowledged and properly recorded. Otherwise, it becomes very easy for the government to deny those landowners by citing its own records and showing that all landowners (who the gov. has records of) have been consulted and approve of the lease.

7) Again, at the end of the speech it is said that the TLTB has a "responsibility to the Fijian people, who rely on the thoughtful and progressive allocation of land and an understanding of the economic and financial imperatives to support social projects and private sector investment that will grow our economy." This is true, but the TLTB has a responsibility, first and foremost, to listen and advocate for the goals of the landowners, not matter if they conflict with the goals of the government.

It is very simple, the only role the TLTB should have is to listen to the desires and wishes of the landowners and to work for those desires and goals. If they conflict with the government's need for private investments to maintain its debt, so be it.

Coup 4.5 said...

want to come to Fiji?


Peter N. Jones, Ph.D.
Director: Bauu Institute and Press
Editor: Indigenous Peoples Issues & Resources
On Fijian Council of Chiefs & Robbing Fijians of Identity without Consultation.
Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, Strategic Planning, National Development and Statistics, Public Service, Peoples Charter for Change and Progress, Information, i-Taukei Affairs, Provincial Development, Sugar Industry, Lands and Mineral Resources

Coup 4.5 said...


Warwick Fiji Resort Mon. 22thOct., 2012
Korolevu 1000 Hours

Members of the Board of Trustees;
Senior management and Staff of the iTaukei Land Trust Board;
Permanent Secretaries and CEOs;
Ladies and Gentlemen.

Bula Vinaka and a very good morning to you.

As Chairman of the Board and Minister for iTaukei Affairs, I’m pleased to have the opportunity to address this most important of our nation’s institutions and its staff.
Since 1940, the TLTB has been entrusted with the task of administering and managing iTaukei lands- to lease them, to collect and distribute rent, and above all to maintain the integrity of those holdings to benefit the landowners.
As landlord of at least 90% of the land in Fiji, the TLTB is also responsible for ensuring that iTaukei lands are accessible for development purposes: that they are used as productively as possible. It is no exaggeration to say that the success of the Fijian economy is dependent on the success and modernisation of the TLTB.
The TLTB provides leases for agriculture, housing, tourism, education, health services and industry. This plays a major role in growing our economy. And that development benefits not only the iTaukei, but every Fijian.
When I announced the Government’s Strategic Framework for Change in 2009, I said what I will repeat today; that the landownership system will remain as it is and native title of lands will not be converted to any other form of ownership.

Coup 4.5 said...

I also say now what I said back then – that more land needs to be made available for productive use. More potential needs to be developed for agriculture, industry, commerce, infrastructure development, and social projects.
I pledged that my Government would work with iTaukei landowners to ensure that they get a fair return on their land when they lease it; that the distribution of the lease monies was carried out on an equitable basis so that all iTaukei benefit, not just a select few.
And our reforms in the sugar industry have been and continue to be especially important. Thousands of farmers rely on sugar cane farming for their survival. Thousands of landowners and their families rely on the rents they receive from those farmers. A viable sugar industry is essential for them and for the nation as a whole. It is a major source of export revenue and one of the main planks of our economy. There are no if, buts or maybes when it comes to sugar. We have no choice but to get the arrangements right, especially as relates to land leases.
Today, some three years down the track, I am happy to state that the Government has kept its word. Our reforms are delivering better outcomes for the nation and for those we serve.

And we will continue to reform. Today, I can announce that the administrative fees charged by TLTB will be reduced 2.5%, effective January 1, 2013. It is expected that these will be reduced a further 2.5% later in the year, equalling an effective 5% drop in 2013. This will mean more lease money in the hands of all landowners.
But we must not forget that there is a responsibility on everyone – landowners and lessees – to make sure that the system works. Landowners must make land available, and those who lease the land must make sure that they pay their rent on time.
We cannot allow a vicious cycle to continue in which- landowners are reluctant to renew leases because they cannot extract their rents. And tenants are reluctant to pay rent because there is uncertainty.
But we are also plagued by in-house problems that we must rectify as soon as possible.
The database of landowners is woefully out of date and has not yet been fully computerised.
In some areas there is a continuing lack of understanding of the mission of the TLTB and a lack of willingness to work to further the development of land usage in Fiji.
The TLTB itself must improve its services and standards.
As we turn our attention to developing a strategic plan for 2013 through to 2015, I would urge a more responsible attitude on the part of the employees of TLTB.
We all know that in some areas we’ve fallen short of our obligation to our people to discharge our duties with the highest level of honesty and integrity.
Some individuals have let the team down.
We hear cases of abuse of office by TLTB staff out in the field. Cases of extortion; Of making promises to lessees that the TLTB staff know they cannot or will not fulfil; Of giving encouragement to landowners that they know is false; Of depriving the very people they serve, the landowners, of their just dues.

Coup 4.5 said...

In fact, staff members have recently been fired because they breached their fiduciary duty to the landowners.
On Friday night, I told our civil servants what I’ll repeat here. That we expect the highest standards of performance and probity.
We will not tolerate laziness or incompetence and anyone who is corrupt will be found out and dealt with.

But it is not only corruption that we must keep a watchful eye on. The TLTB must also fight against the plague of an unresponsive and uncaring bureaucracy. The TLTB must adhere to good corporate governance. And the TLTB must modernise.
As your Prime Minister and Chairman of the Board, I urge each of you to reflect on how you can do your jobs better, not just for yourselves, but for the people you serve.
In order to encourage this, the TLTB will be reviewing the Terms and Conditions of all employees’ contracts and employee rules.
Now, promotion will be given on merit, initiative will be rewarded, and additional benefits will be reserved for those whose performance has set them apart.
You will be judged by current market and industry standards, not by who you know or how long you have been with the TLTB.
This is one the very basic reforms we are looking to implement across Government bodies. We want to put our best foot forward. We need to put ordinary people first. We don’t want to tie them up in red tape, delay services to them because of incompetence, or place unnecessary hurdles in their way.
We must always look for ways to make the system more simple and accessible, to enable and facilitate, not confuse and obstruct.
You need to be more responsive to the people’s needs, especially for the poorer and less educated.
As the largest landlord in Fiji, the TLTB has a huge amount of responsibility: responsibility to the land owners, who rely on honest and competent delivery of service and payment; responsibility to the tenants, who rely on advocacy to ensure security and sustainability; and finally, responsibility to the Fijian people, who rely on the thoughtful and progressive allocation of land and an understanding of the economic and financial imperatives to support social projects and private sector investment that will grow our economy.
That is the big picture. But I want to stress today that it is the little person we stand for – and stand by - most of all.
Empathy, compassion and kindness are as important as lists, graphs and charts.
Yes, we must always observe proper procedure and strive for maximum efficiency.
But we must never forget that we are servants with a mission to serve the people of Fiji.

Good luck with your deliberations. After this workshop, I look forward to improved service delivery by a modern, efficient, and competent TLTB.
Thank you. Vinaka vakalevu.
Press Release from Fiji’s Ministry of Information on October 25, 2012

Anonymous said...

Looks like Ghai wisely took the advice of the anonymous blogger to C4.5, who wrote on November 2, 2012 at 1:12 AM:

"The 'non-negotiable' principles of this regime are in direct contravention of the terms under which Ghai's commission was formed, when it was asked to give Fiji a democratic constitution. What about THAT?"

Mini Mouse said...

I think Frank has a point there has been a conflict of interest but I think he should step away because really there's been conflicts of interest left, right and centre with his mickey mouse regime.

Anonymous said...

Word around the kava bowl is support for Madraiwiwi, big support.

Anonymous said...

Talking of interference in the constitution process, has anyone got more informaton on ho AUSAID is funding an ANU conference in Bali on electoral reform to which about 12 Fijians are being invited, including Teimumu Kepa, Naqama Lalabalavu, Mahendra Chaudhry? All the way to Bali for a few days, and Australia say it is not interfering in the work of the Commission? Why hide behind ANU's back, why thousands of dollars spent on taking Fijians to Bali? Someone must answer. The mastermind is said to be a New Zealand academic who used to live in Australia.

Anonymous said...

What Prof Ghai does not know is that the regime's mole in the Commission is none other than 'Sarka Kuto' Nandan, who has the habit of ingratiating himself to anyone who can help him. Nandan will decamp to Australia as soon as the Commission's work is done, a Chamar if there ever was one.

Anonymous said...

This Rt Joni is a fence sitter. A chief who is a fence sitter cannot be trusted. He hid behind the Bau submission to save face in Bau but his personal views are same as regime ie everybody is a Fijian.
Pls Rt Joni be brave enough to make an individual submission like some chiefs have done....
Sa rauta mada na ta rua tiko o kemudou mai Kubuna!

SEMI MEO said...

@ Ganesh November 5, 2012 12:41 PM..be good when your cousin Ghai absconds that you take over..

Le’s keep to this pathway my friend as us 99.99% are just fed up with the circus..or do you have a better idea, apart from coveting Ghai job!

Anonymous said...

Closed party list has been confirmed.

We can all go home now and sleep on it.

'ey bruther, whaz ca close partee list sisstem

boi, u need ca loier for that one.

cuz, headaike ga e

Mere said...

Very much appreciated the comments of Dr. Peter Jones.

Agree with Ganesh regarding the lack of mandate for Ghai's commission or a new constitution, as well as the 'phoniness' of the whole exercise.

Have to think that Ghai is well aware that Prof. Nandan is Aiyaz's stooge and stoolie.

Note that SDL, the Fiji Labour Party, the National Federation Party, the United Peoples Party, chiefs and civil society have all united to call for a caretaker government and to reject immunity for treason. Ghai cannot plausibly ignore this. No bullshit 'non-negotiable' of the regime contravenes the idea of relinquishing the reins of government to an independent, caretaker government. In fact, the logic of the situation demands it.

And immunity will just have to stay off the table, at least until this arrogant regime does something worthy enough to deserve reconsideration of the issue.

Kamlesh Kumar. said...

Ratu Jone Madraiwiwi is a true Fijian. He has got Fiji in his heart. He is also very multiracial. I have full support for him. A very fair and educated person.

Isa Sobolei said...

Ghai, the credibility of this constitution commision has been compromised with ulukau commander public outcry. Pack your bilikani and head home while the weather is clear. You're dealing with a crazy lunatic paranoia dicktator there.

Anonymous said...

Pacific in the media. I think you guys are just as full of horse manure as the rest of the fundamentalist idiots purporting to be democratic all the while rooting for a Fiji that is classed as a Christian state and where the i taukei rule as first class citizens continuing their ancient culture of 'Masipolo' to the chiefs and the church ministers and live a lazy tin fish and corned mutton filled life gotten of the hard work and sweat of others while the rest of the world moves on. Why don't you just go all the way and publicly announce that Fiji Indians are not wanted in Fiji and we should find a place to go to because if the SDL has the majority support then the Indians in this country are doomed anyway. Ultimately that is the SDL motive anyway. Make life so unbearable that people who are not i-taukei just find someway to leave.
You certainly do not want equality amongst all races as you seem to despise Bainimarama even if he does anything good. I wish for a long life for Bainimarama and i want him to rule Fiji as long as he can and then hand over power to someone of his own ideals. Screw elections if all people can think about is Christian state and gay marriage. What good is democracy when most people in Fiji understand nothing about democracy. That is my opinion and i am a Fijian who contributes $1m to the Fiji economy by taxes and duty alone each year what have you done for Fiji lately. Anyone.

Peter Foster said...

SDL heading towards disaster under Tupeni Baba the life time opportunist.

Anonymous said...

S Meo
Lako tani mada ,,,sa sosa saraga o iho

Anonymous said...

Sadly, people who support Frank have no idea of what democracy is..its by the people for the people rather than forcing the people.its the fairness bit that needs to be addresed but there is always a mechanism to follow..

SEMI MEO said...

@November 5, 2012 7:25 PM...ae...cava noqu cala..niu raica ga na kuila ni Viti..rai tani sara..ina kuila ni ....Idia...

Still time to make submissions...even from faceless and namless cyber thugs...just make sure you wearing something...

Anonymous said...

Where is Prof Sri Yukt Dr Satendra Pratap None-Done ??---sitting under a mango tree in meigunyah eating goat palau served by his nephews and nephews children !!---the bloody glutton .Not a sound from him---not evn the usual fart !!

Ganesh said...

Anonymous 5:42, thank you for your contributions -- both in taxes and in ideas. Taking what you say at face vlue, it's evident you have a low regard for indigenous Fijians. Well, perhaps it is earned to a certain extent, but then, what might they and others have to say about the culture of the country from whence our ancestors came to find a better life, and which you, at least, seem to have achieved?

Doesn't your fear of an iTaukei majority seem to argue for reserved parliamentary seats on a communal basis, rather than 'one man, one vote, one value'? MPC has now arrived at such a conclusion. Therefore, when you speak of equality, you speak not of majority rule but minority rights.

Democracy is both.

What you need to recognise is that Bainimarama's approach allows for neither. A dictatorship like his negates majority views. And a tyranny like his violates and undermines the entire legal edifice carefully built up over centuries in order to protect minority rights.

This is the time when you should work through the FLP or others to solemnise with the SDL its vow to support multiculturalism. Instead, you support treason, and with other tappans who support Bainimarama, prescribe a cure for Fiji that is even worse than its illness.

Joeli Bulu said...

Islam is the official religion of Singapore. Why can't we in Fiji be declared a Christian State? It is our wish as the indigenous people of this land. A linkage to our ancestors at the Deed of Cession to realise their intentions. Well done Bau for standing up for this one. It is your role to be the leading edge for matters Fijian. Other religions should not fear the Christian faith being made official. There will be no barriers for the practice of other religions. No religious impositions.Fiji is not sophisticated enough to be a secular state. And moreover, we Fijians generally are not into secularism. We can be a democratic Christian Pacific State that is the model of tolerance. This is an important recognition of a key part of our identity.

Anonymous said...

Ratu Joni is an educated man. The Banana is not educated and he certainly is NOT a man with any principles.

The Banana is the one who should not make any comments to the Commission.

Priscilla Queen of the Desert said...

In saying what he's saying below Frank is surely admitting the Constitution will not be what the people want. Frank, if this is what the people want why can't it be so??

"Professor Ghai knows that the decree stipulates that any staff or consultants engaged by the Commission must abide by its non-negotiable principles and be impartial. Those non-negotiable principles include a secular state, which Ratu Joni opposed when he lent his name to a submission calling for a Christian state."

Poised for Justice said...

I hate to say it but Frank has a point. Ghai has picked a fight but it's no a good one. The Constitution talks were never going to be a success anyway.

The Prime Minister noted Professor Ghai’s statement that Ratu Joni was not paid his consultancy fee on the day he was party to the submission on a Christian state.
Commodore Bainimarama responded to that by saying: “This is neither here nor there as far as the Government is concerned. It also demonstrates that there is no transparency in the appointment of consultants by the Commission.
“The fact is that Ratu Joni was engaged as a consultant on October the 1st.
“He was party to a submission against one of the non-negotiable provisions on October 12th and continued as a consultant until the end of the month.
“This breached the terms of the decree and there is no other way to portray it,” the Prime Minister said.

Anonymous said...

Ghai, isn't the writing on the wall clear enough for you yet? Dakuwaqa advised you to throw a hissy fit and leave. You should follow his advice, as things are not going to get better.

What are you waiting for?

Anonymous said...

Who decided what these non-negotiable provisions were? What authority does the arbiter of these non negotiable provisions have? What is the point of Yash Ghai's Commission if his hands are tied. If he is a man of principle Yash should walk away from this contract now he sees the real colour of the people who appointed him. You folks at 4.5 - you should set up your own newspaper when this dark period is over. If you want cash to do so make it known and I will provide funds. I will contact you when you make that decision made publically. I am anonymous because I can see this regime is vindictive.

Anonymous said...

Joeli Bulu
Bau to be the leader in Fijian matters ,,,,u must be joking,,,,majority dont even know what they want including Rt Joni who is confused,,,,Frank is actuaelly right,,,,whiy the hypocrisy,l,,,say it as it is like the Rewa chiefs who now are obviously the voice of the Kai Vitis,,,,,,,
Look at another confused Bau chief and useless,,,,Rt Nailatikau

Anonymous said...

Semi Meo
Kerekere ,,,rawa ni vakamacsls tska mada vei keimami nomu tavi vakavanua mai nomu koro???

Dau Taki Wai

Sharon Suaniu said...



Anonymous said...

Sharon suaniu taki obama ga.

Anonymous said...

ASK is back in the country. Did the fiji democracy crowd buturaki him in sydney or it was just talk and vaqakoro.

The Newman said...

Frank is right! The commission has breached the terms of its engagement in allowing a consultant to be party to a submission that was totally in conflict with one of the non negotiable terms.
Yasha Ghai should have stopped Rt Joni. By doing what he did Rt showed that he was partial and not objective.
As a citizen,a taukei Chief and Christian Rt Joni has the right to express his views just like anybody else but in doing so he has compromised his neutrality as an unbiased advisor to the commission. No matter how strong Ghai wants to justify Rt Joni's actions the fact of the matter is Ghai himself has made a big blunder and has revealed his hand.
The terms of reference clearly provides a framework for a new beginning, new ideas, new doctrine, new values founded on the people's charter.
Whilst the people's submission expressed the people's views the commission's job is to stick to the terms of reference for a new constitution. They should not try to preempt the outcome.
There are many of us who are fed up with the old traditions, the old political system, the old religious divisions, the old economic order, the old TLTB abuse and mismanagement, the old archaic village chiefly systems so much that we want to try something new.
This is an ideal opportunity to do so! But we seem to always want to look back all the time.
We need to adapt the God's words 'forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead.'

Anonymous said...

Prof Ghai is now seeing that he is dealing with an unusual person in bai. bai's behaviour has been odd even before taking over the elected govt. He has to be odd for carrying out such an odious act of high treason. So all these conflicts come as no surprise. We must therefore expect more of these craziness coming from the dictator himself in the lead up to the promised election.

Ratunaca said...

One should only comment if/when one understands the issue/s at hand as to deviate from it shows what one has in one's upstair's..! Ulukau. Now having said that, I will ask this question. Why is VB so worried about Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi's inclusion in the commission? I think we all know the answer!!!

Ghai statement said...


Statement of the Chair of the Constitution Commission on RatuJoni Madraiwiwi’s consultancy

Prime MinsterVoreqe Bainimarama’s attack on Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi for the consultancy with the Constitution Commission is unfair. He has criticised him and the commission for improper and deceitful conduct. These are serious charges. For the record, let me set the facts straight.

A constitution covers a wide variety of issues, some of considerable complexity. Members of a small commission such as ours cannot be expected to have sufficient knowledge of all the issues on which they have to make decisions. The Decree wisely provides for the commission to seek the assistance of experts on specialised issues. The experts can be local or foreign—we have had both. We have benefited greatly from the experience and research of local experts, some of whom were deeply involved in the preparation of the People’s Charter, and some opposed to it.

It is not our practice to make public announcements when we appoint a consultant (nor are we required to do so). But we certainly do not hide our experts. If we are asked, as was the case with RatuJoni’s appointment, we have not withheld iformation.

We often invite government, military, academic and civic organisations to workshops which are organised around topics of the experts. We also try to organise a public event in the form of a seminar with our foreign experts, to educate and engage the people—with very considerable success. Members of the government departments, including the Prime Minister’s Office, have attended our internal workshops where RatuJoni was present.

Ghai statement said...

When we were considering which local experts could help the Commission, we all supported RatuJoni’s participation. That is hardly surprising. He is well known locally and internationally, not only for his wide knowledge and experience of the law, but of social and political affairs, a deep understanding of traditional cultures, and for his wisdom. He is admired for his strong sense of fairness. None of the local commissioners, despite their other excellent qualifications, has practical or academic experience of law. Questions of local law crop up all the time as we decide on the content of the constitution. The lack of submissions from relevant government bodies has made expert guidance on law more necessary, a task that RatuJoni fulfilled admirably.

When I first approached him for his assistance, he agreed readily, and indicated that he did not need a consultancy or a fee. It was under pressure from us that he accepted a consultancy, no different from other consultancies. He also made it clear that he was intending to make his own submission and asked us if this would create a conflict. The commission considered and concluded that there would be no conflict.

The contractual arrangements for the consultancy do not provide for an automatic payment for 30 days. This is the maximum period, but payments are made only for the days he worked for us. He neither claimed nor was paid for the day he came to the public hearing.

It is alleged that Ratu Joni's position with the Commission was untenable because he appeared before us as part of the delegation from the chiefly island of Bau which supported the concept of a Christian State. Fiji is a small society and people function in several capacities and contexts. Ratu Joni Madraiwiwi is not only a legal practitioner with some years' experience, but a Fijian who has served in the public service and the judiciary as well as on the boards of civil society organisations concerned with human rights. He is also a traditional leader and it was in that role that he appeared before the Commission. RatuJoni's views about Fiji as a secular, multicultural and tolerant society are a matter of public record, but he also respected what the people of Bau wanted. These contradictions are not uncommon in a country in transition and are part of the challenges the Commission faces in drafting a new Constitution.

Throughout our work with Ratu Joni, we have found hima person of great integrity, knowledge and wisdom.

Yash Ghai

4November 2012

Anonymous said...

Of course Rt. Joni would run circles past Bainimarama in a political campaign. But for all his many fine qualities, it is clear that R. Joni won't go out on a limb to oppose Bainimarama. He is emblematic of what Fiji is missing: morally courageous leadership.

Anonymous said...

Frank is worried about Ratu Joni because he is a known homosexual who is in a marriage of convenience. He doesn't wats Ratu Joni to molest Yash Ghai and spoil the constitution process......don't you guys get it? It obvious isn't it. Do not delete this admin because this is my democratic right to voice my opinion.

Anonymous said...

For those expecting members or consultants of the commision to not have their own personal views you are not living with reality.

They are all educated people from different walks of life and all should respect their opinions whether agreed with or not.

You simply can not put together a group of moronic no brainers without any opinions to undertake a task such as this.

What IS important is that they use fairness and impartiality in what they are producing and there has been no evidence to date to suggest this is not happening.

Anonymous said...

Professor Satendra Sarka Kuhto was last seen serving chutney chasers to some chiefs drinking home brew under a mango tree in Meigunyah.

Anonymous said...

Why is Australia secretly supporting a covert workshop on electoral system in BALI for Fijian dissidents through the so-called Centre for Democratic Institutions at the ANU? Why the secrecy? Is ANU the vessel for Australia's foreign policy? Bob Carr, what you say?

Coup 4.5 said...

My fellow letter writer Sukha Singh wants to know why constitutional expert Professor Yash Ghai needs to engage a consultant for the making of a new constitution for Fiji (FT 5/11).
It's because "None of the local commissioners,despite their other excellent qualifications, has practical or academic experience of law" (source : Ghai's statement in Fijileaks).
Now constitution making is a very complex legal matter. So quite clearly you can't make a constitution if you don't have people with that experience.
Hence the recruitment of a consultant in the person of Ratu Joni Madrawiwi.
And Fiji can't ask for a more qualified consultant.
I am actually surprised he was not with the constitution making commission from the start.
I wonder why?
Rajend Naidu

Anonymous said...

'Sarka Kuto' Nandan is the regime's mole in the Commission, especially ASK. And Brown Noser Robin Nair is the regime's chief ass licker, like his brown sahib father Raman Nair. Please people, wake up.

Anonymous said...

@ Anon 2:33...vaka mena wilika nomui vola eke ko Bob...drau pamu kei Bob...YEDO

Anonymous said...

What is critical in this discussion is the process followed by the Commission. Mr Ghai has the right to consult and what Frank is doing is trying to put words into Ghais mouth. The constitution is not for Frank or Airase or Gates or Shameem - Ghai want to get views of people who have Fiji and its people at heart and not personal agenda. We have to note that FGhai has done this before and those that are maing road blocks obviously do not want Fiji to be put back to peoples government (democracy)

Anonymous said...

If you can recall Frank kept on changing the goal post when negotiating with the mediator during the 2000 crisis and he did it again with Qarase so as PM of NZ at that time. Both leaders refer to him as unstable and unreliable which Ghai is realising it now. When these sort of things happen more that once it showed that someone else was doing the thinking for him and he could not remember because he does not have the capacity to remember anything.

The Heckler said...

Anonymous 12:49, it's unclear whether you're saying that Rt. Joni is a homosexual in a marriage of convenience or Bainimarama is.

I'm guessing you meant Bainimarama, 'cause every time you kiss him he giggles.

Anonymous said...

Do not resign Ghai. Keep at it so there is no excuse for Voreqe to call off elections.

Anonymous said...

Joni Madaraicici a dau soli cici wavoki tu la eliu. Da kila kece tu na taba vata. A cava tale e caka tiko mai qo?