#header-inner img {margin: 0 auto !important; #header-inner {text-align: Center ;} Fiji Coupfourpointfive: 2012-04-15

Friday, April 20, 2012

FNPF pensioners still not paid

Fiji National Provident Fund still hasn't paid pensioners - two days after CEO Aisake Taito confirmed the first payment under the new age-based pension scheme had been delayed because of technical glitches.

Taito blamed the glitches on internal and external processes but said pensioners would get their money by Friday.

The Fiji Times revealed two days ago it had been inundated with calls and complaints from disgruntled pensioners in the west, Nausori and Suva who hadn't been paid on Monday as promised by FNPF. 

It quoted Taito as saying: "We're working round-the-clock to sort out these glitches and are processing payments on 24-hour shifts to ensure that all payments are paid out by Friday."

Friday has rolled around and payments have still not been made according to information sent in to us. Neither has there been any further explanation or apology from Taito, who two days ago pleaded with members to bear with them saying the processing was an onerous exercise and "we are pooling all resources to sort this out".

Taito also said at the time FNPF would ensure the money is /transferred accurately and efficiently to each of the 11,000 members.'

"I would like to sincerely apologise to pensioners for this unforeseen delay and would like to assure them that payments would be completed before the end of the week," he told Fiji Times.

Rewa chief: there was no threat from me or anyone else

Transcript of the Radio Australia interview between Rewa chief, Ro Teimumu Kepa, and the Australian journalist who claimed she was playing the race card. 
Fiji chief denies making threats
A paramount chief in Fiji denies she's played the race card or threatened internal strife in a letter to the interim prime minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama.

Ro Teimumu Kepa, who heads the Burebasaga Confederacy, says her letter to Commodore Bainimarama simply stated that the role of the Great Council of Chief in the life of Fijians should not be discounted.

An opinion article in a pro-government newspaper criticised her for threatening a calamity, but she says she was simply raising the concerns of indigenous Fijians, and was making no threats.

Presenter: Bruce Hill.

 Speakers: Graeme Davis, Fiji-born Australia-based journalist; Ro Teimumu Kepa, who heads the Burebasaga Confederacy of Fiji


KEPA: What I was trying to say in that letter is that there is a place for the GCC in our country and that is that we have over half the population that are indigenous Fijian and those people have the highest forum with the GCC where they can bring matters of concern or of interest to them to the GCC. So with the abolishment of the GCC which he… I think it was one of the first things he did was to suspend it, that was in 2007 and then this year he has brought about in the decree, the total abolishment of the GCC.


HILL: In your letter you say that any calamity between the races or even between indigenous Fijians themselves can only be resolved with the involvement of the GCC. This word “calamity”, that’s been criticized as being some kind of a threat perhaps some sort of prediction that violence might break out?

Kepa: There is no threat from me or from anyone else. We do not have anything that can cause calamity. They are the ones that have everything, and right from the beginning, they’ve been taking away things slowly from the population, but especially from Fijians


Bainimarama shows how green he is

Pressing the flesh. Bainimarama with Kasabias Management. pic MINFO
 
Fiji's illegal leader has a lot to learn about mastering the ways of a real prime minister.

He has today revealed the regime has found the fifth and last member of the Constitution Commission - before she has even been contacted or has signed on the dotted line.

FBC News is running the story under the banner headline 'Final Commission Member Identified: PM'

Bainimarama has told the state-owned news organisation it's a local woman who is currently overseas and that they haven't even approached her yet.

"Yes we are on track, as you know we have just named the additional international member of the constitution in the last couple of days.

"We have identified the local but we’ve have to get in touch with the person, because I understand the person is away overseas so we need the persons endorsement before we can put out the name publicly."

On such a crucial subject, most PMs would've been more professional and not so dumb to give so much information away when the candidate hasn't even been asked.

It's believed the woman has NGO experience.


http://www.fbc.com.fj/fiji/1680/final-commission-member-identified-pm

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Hype and corruption go hand in hand


Heroes of the flood clean up....prisoners.
It's corrupt either way you look at it.
The police force says it has recorded a 49 per cent increase in complaints since the beginning of the year.
Offences? Failing to complete reports, dishonesty in investigations and failing to follow up on complaints. 

On a more serious note seven police officers were charged for stealing foodstuffs from Ba during the floods but there is some suggestion the 'crime' has been hyped by the police chief Ioane Naivalurua to make it look as though he's on top of the job.

Flip now to Frank Bainimarama. Since appointing himself prime minister after carrying out a coup in 2006 supposedly to clean up the sins of the SDL government, he and his supporters have proceeded to commit crime after crime against the people of Fiji, all in the name of creating a new Utopia.

Today a crime of some magnitude. Continuing to cash in on the recent floods as he campaigns for 2014, Bainimarama has now decided that the RFMF should 'defer' this year's recruitment drive. Chief of Staff Operations Lieutenant-Colonel Amani Suliano has been quoted as saying it's a directive from Bainimarama and they will instead  'concentrate on helping people affected by the floods.'

At the height of the floods in recent weeks, when the country most needed the help of the huge army and its resources (remember they were calling on citizens to give their boats to DISMAC), the RFMF was AWOL.

If they were helping out it was light work and it was left to the victims themselves, volunteers, NGOs, aid agencies and the country's prisoners to help families and businesses, especially with the cleaning up. 

The corrupt Bainimarama would have us believe another story but the flood pictures tell a different tale. And as they say, pictures paint a thousand words.
 Fiji Police Force recorded a 49 per cent increase in complaints against its officers in the first quarter of this year. Speaking to officers at their first quarter parade this morning, Police Commissioner Brigadier-General Iowane Naivalurua said his major concern is in the area of complaints against police and complaints against their service. Brig-Gen Naivalurua said complaints against police means that officers have failed to conduct themselves properly and did things that they should not have done. He said some have failed to complete reports, while others showed dishonesty in their investigations. Some others may not have provided feedback in a timely manner to those who complained. He said there is more work to be done in providing services and working honestly each day. The first quarter saw a reduction in reported crimes against women by 52 per cent and a reduction in reported crimes against children by 24 per cent. More than 600 police officers were present at the parade.


Read more at: http://www.fijilive.com/news/2012/04/49-rise-in-complaints-against-police/41799/
Copyright 2012 © Fijilive.com


lice Force recorded a 49 per cent increase in complaints against its officers in the first quarter of this year. Speaking to officers at their first quarter parade this morning, Police Commissioner Brigadier-General Iowane Naivalurua said his major concern is in the area of complaints against police and complaints against their service. Brig-Gen Naivalurua said complaints against police means that officers have failed to conduct themselves properly and did things that they should not have done. He said some have failed to complete reports, while others showed dishonesty in their investigations. Some others may not have provided feedback in a timely manner to those who complained. He said there is more work to be done in providing services and working honestly each day. The first quarter saw a reduction in reported crimes against women by 52 per cent and a reduction in reported crimes against children by 24 per cent. More than 600 police officers were present at the parade.

Read more at: http://www.fijilive.com/news/2012/04/49-rise-in-complaints-against-police/41799/
Copyright 2012 © Fijilive.com
The Fiji Police Force recorded a 49 per cent increase in complaints against its officers in the first quarter of this year. Speaking to officers at their first quarter parade this morning, Police Commissioner Brigadier-General Iowane Naivalurua said his major concern is in the area of complaints against police and complaints against their service. Brig-Gen Naivalurua said complaints against police means that officers have failed to conduct themselves properly and did things that they should not have done. He said some have failed to complete reports, while others showed dishonesty in their investigations. Some others may not have provided feedback in a timely manner to those who complained. He said there is more work to be done in providing services and working honestly each day. The first quarter saw a reduction in reported crimes against women by 52 per cent and a reduction in reported crimes against children by 24 per cent. More than 600 police officers were present at the parade.

Read more at: http://www.fijilive.com/news/2012/04/49-rise-in-complaints-against-police/41799/
Copyright 2012 © Fijilive.com

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Shameem and Goundar hatched outcome of Kunatuba case

Nazhat Shameem
Revealed - another case that will come back to haunt the corrupt former high court judge Nazhat Shameem and her lapdog, Fiji's hanging judge Daniel Goundar.

Daniel Goundar
In State v Kunatuba, Shameem was the presiding judge and Goundar the prosecutor. 
 
And yet both were heard discussing openly the details of the pending Court of Appeal case at a workshop (March 16, 2010) two months before it was called, with Shameem coaching then DPP Aca Rayawa and cautioning him with the words: I won’t be there to convict Kunatuba.

 
Goundar – then a sitting judge and an appellate judge – also participated in the workshop and his words were: And I won’t be there to prosecute Kunatuba.

 
The workshop discussed at length how Rayawa, who the regime later fired, would respond to the appeal and what he would use. 


Shameem gave him all her thoughts of the trial and why she had Kunatuba convicted by tailoring her summing up.
 
The Appeal Court got wind of the nuances of Shameem and Goundar, hence the reference to them only by title. (see 5.0 below)

 
Kunatuba was guilty (the corrupt regime re-employed him in the public service in a senior position reporting to Frank Bainimarama under the Prison's Yellow Ribbon Campaign!) but was it right for the judge who presided over the case in the High Court to openly discuss it with DPP prosecutors and Goundar? 

 
Do judges who have retired or as in this case - have been sacked - openly decide how and why they presided over a particular case? Is this not a case of perverting the course of justice?

 
The question that must be asked of Goundar is: how could he as a sitting judge attend a workshop at the DPP’s office and comment on the Kunatuba appeal case, which was before Court? Is this ethical conduct?

 
And isn't the Kunatuba case the one that helped get Goundar appointed to the High Court, compliments of Shameem?

 
Furthermore, what will Tony Gates do about this? Will he pull Goundar or let this one also go as he did the Bano conflict of interest case?

 
And if Shameem and Goundar can talk so freely at a workshop about who presided and will not now preside and who prosecuted and will now not be there to prosecute the appeal, what guarantee is there they didn’t discuss the matter when it was being prosecuted in the High Court? 

 
But most importantly, if they can comment so freely about someone who is close to the regime, what are they likely to hatch about regime opponents?


The office of the DPP is listed as clients on the website for Nazhat Shameem's law firm. The picture above with Daniel Goundar and Anthony Gates (left and middle) is the main pic on her client's page. pic Law Fiji



Kunatuba v State [2010] FJCA 17; AAU0067.2006 (5 May 2010)

IN THE COURT OF APPEAL,
FIJI ISLANDS
AT SUVA

Criminal Appeal AAU 0067 of 2006

BETWEEN

PENIASI KUNATUBA
APPELLANT

AND:

THE STATE
RESPONDENT


Coram: Byrne, AP
Madigan, JA
Fernando, JA

Counsel: I. Fa for the Appellant
A. Rayawa and Ms S. Puamau for the Respondent

Dates of Hearing: 23rd, 24th March 2010
Date of Judgment: 5th May 2010



JUDGMENT OF THE COURT

INTRODUCTION

[1.0] Between the 25th of September and 14th of November 2006, the appellant stood trial in the High Court at Suva on two counts of abuse of office pursuant to Section 111 of the former Penal Code.

[2.0] Count 1 alleged that the appellant between the 6th of July 2000 and the 13th of August 2001 at Suva, being employed as Permanent Secretary for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forests abused his office by dishonestly implementing an Affirmative Action Farming Assistance Scheme without authority for the purpose of gain for himself and others which allowed payments to Suncourt Hardware, Morris Hedstrom, Asco Motors, Repina Wholesalers and R.C.Manubhai and Company, thereby prejudicing the rights of the Government of Fiji.

[3.0] Count 2 alleged that between the 6th of July 2000 and the 31st of December 2001 at Suva in abuse of his office he did an arbitrary act, namely dishonestly, deliberately and persistently breached the rules and procedures regarding the expenditure of public funds under the Finance Act and for the purpose of gain allowed payment to the same companies.

[4.0] The Penal Code defined the offence of abuse of office in the following words:

"Any person who, being employed in the public service, does or directs to be done, in abuse of the authority of his office, any arbitrary act prejudicial to the rights of another, is guilty of a misdemeanour".

[5.0] The trial was conducted before the then Senior Puisne Judge of the High Court. The Prosecutor was the then Assistant Director of Public Prosecutions who is now the Senior Puisne Judge of the High Court. Counsel for the Accused, the present appellant, was an experienced lawyer in Fiji who in 2008 received an award from the Fiji Law Society for being the best lawyer in Fiji for 2007

RFMF response reveals its fear of Rewa chief

It seems the regime is afraid of women - strong and powerful women.
 
In a clear attempt to muffle the voice of democracy, the junta's spokesperson Mosese Tikoitoga has moved to stomp on two events this week that show the citizens of Fiji are still fighting hard for a return to democracy.
 
Using the well-heeled regime organ the Fiji Sun, Tikoitgoa yesterday tried to belittle womens groups meeting for the first time since 2006 and calling for gender equity at both the political and constitutional level.
 
Today, the cardboard colonel tried to downplay  the significance of a letter from the Rewa chief Ro Teimumu Kepa to Frank Bainimarama about the abolishment of the Great Council of Chiefs.
 
The letter tells Bainimarama fair and square: “The revolutionary changes that you are making in Fiji cannot be made without the involvement of the Great Council of Chiefs of Fiji. They are the source of peace, stability and unifying factor for the different communities living in Fiji.”
 
Trotting out the regime's stock argument the  chiefs had to go because they had become highly politicised, Tikoitoga claims Ro Teimumu's letter is a non-issue. Yet he's using the Fiji Sun to promote his cause.
 
Sticking to his story that Fiji is moving forward, he reminded people that "All grievances must now be aired through the democratic channel and not through an undemocratic channel like the GCC."
 
Tikoitoga has his work cut out for him. There has been huge support for Ro Teimumu despite detractors and regime aligned regional journalists making out she is playing the race card. 
If anyone's playing the race card they are.
 
There is also support for the womens groups and their call for an immediate return to democracy, despite Tikoitoga telling people NGOs are self-serving.
 
We will no doubt see more of Tikoitoga as the regime continues its charade of allowing people to engage in so-called constitutional talks (only to claim via media they're racist and greedy) and the country prepares for 2014.


The RFMF land force commander will be marched out to keep people in line, allowing Bainimarama to continue his electioneering, pretending he's squeaky clean and fit to be voted in as PM or President.
  
Such is the hypocrisy at work in Fiji today .... as it moves forward.
Beware of NGOs

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Coup apologist comes a cropper

Robin Nair
Coup apologist Robin Nair has resigned as director of the University of Fiji's Centre for International and Regional Affairs after a fall out with the Vice Chancellor, Mahendra Kumar.

The Fiji Times says the former diplomat resigned last Friday - the same day Kumar cancelled two postgraduate courses due to be started by Nair's section.

Mahendra Kumar
Nair, who was one of the early supporters of the illegal regime alongside John Samy and John Prasad, is quoted as saying he resigned when the classes were cancelled unilaterally by the 'VC' and against advice from and the registrar and for concocted reasons.

Kumar says the courses were being postponed not cancelled. "The original advertisement did state that the courses will only be offered if there is a minimum number that would ensure the course is viable."

Just five students had paid their $750 fee. The courses included government officials, workers from regional and international organisations, the private sector and journalists.

Monday, April 16, 2012

DPP forced to withdraw case against Padarath

Padarath: Charges dismissed and withdrawn. pic Fiji Village
The DPP loses another one.

Charges against Ben Padarath relating to concealing false government documents were dismissed today by Chief Magistrate Usaia Ratuvili.

The DPP was supposed to proceed with its case today but asked again for the trial to be moved to a new date.

Badly beaten: Padarath. pic Bula Tribun
It had already moved the trial date from last year to this week - and had also last week tried to get it adjourned so it could salvage what it could, including looking at withdrawing the charges and calling Padarath as a state witness in other related matters.

It lost out on both with the charge against Padarath dismissed and withdrawn under the criminal procedure decree section 166. 
Coupfourpointfive last year broke the story about Padarath being caught up in an alleged failed plot to overthrow Frank Bainimarama after papers were found at his Suva home.
Padarath was also caught up in a deal involving Suva lawyer Renee Lal and an African migrant, Paul Freeman and was accused of trying to get Freeman put on the Immigration Watch List after a fall out.


Coupfourpointfive revealed that both Padarath and Lal were beaten by regime soldiers and that Padarath was assaulted so badly, he was forced to use a wheelchair.

Pro-democracy movement rebutt Australian journo's 'race card' claims and challenge him to disclose his links with regime

Suliasi Daunitutu (left) at last week's Black Tuesday rally.
The pro-democracy movement says Australian journalist Graham Davis’ story about the Gone Marama Bale, the Roko Tui Dreketi’s letter to Frank Bainimarama is so biased 'it is tantamount to professional recklessness.'

The Fiji Democracy and Freedom Movement (FDFM) in Australia says even Davis' attack on Ro Teimumu for addressing Bainimarama as 'Voreqe' instead of 'Frank' is below the belt and ill-informed.

GCC helped secure release of Chaudhry govt during Speight coup.
FDFM president Suliasi Daunitutu says Davis dishonestly uses Ro Teimumu's letter to suggest 'a titanic struggle looms between the old and new orders in Fiji for the hearts and minds of the indigenous majority – the i’taukei'.

He says it is 'irresponsible media hype' aimed at stirring emotions never intended by the writer.

"The deliberate choice of title ‘Paramount Chief deals the race card’ is intended to deflect from the substance of the Gone Marama Bale’s letter to Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama ... implying a foreign meaning, more sinister in nature and calculated to attract negative reaction from knee jerk reactionaries."

Daunitutu says FDFM wholeheartedly agree with the gist of the Gone Marama Bale’s letter and her comment to Bainimarama regarding his illegal government's obsession with race issues:

"Internationally, ethnicity and culture are recognised and valued, for it is only through racial and ethnic diversity that we can realise civic strength. It is when our nation fully appreciates the different ethnic communities and their culture and learn to accept the different cultures and religion, it is then only, when we will have everlasting peace in Fiji.”

Daunitutu says he himself had warned the military junta of its short sightedness in abolishing the GCC in an earlier release which concluded that FDFM is concerned that:

- Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum’s personal agenda of wanting to dismantle Fijian Institutions because it will supposedly free Fijians has fooled Commodore Bainimarama and others.

- It fails to grasp the possibility that it could instead unleash and spiral Fijians out of control, fuelled by an avalanche of fear and anger directed against Bainimarama, Sayed-Khaiyum and their supporters triggering an implosion within Fiji’s already fragmented RFMF, civil population; causing a massive wave of retribution &amp - causing civil unrest affecting all peoples and the economy, but unfortunately Fijians and Indo-Fijians will bear the brunt, of the likes never witnessed in modern Fiji before.

Daunitutu says like Ro Teimumu's letter, FDFM's concerns were never meant to incite people or to arouse racial hatred as made out by Davis, but rather serve as a concerned warning of what could happen as a result of the regime's decision to dismantle Fijian Institutions, such as the GCC.

"FDFM wishes to reiterate, it was the Great Council of Chiefs who negotiated the release of the Chaudhry Government from George Speight’s captivity through the Maunikau Accord, which unfortunately resulted in Speight’s arrest following the subsequent attack on the Kalabu Settlement because of Voreqe’s reneging on his promise and blaming everyone else accept himself.

"Graham is ill-advised in using the ‘race card’ as his trump card because this was never the intention of the Gone Marama Bale, thus inviting ridicule and scorn upon himself after being caught out throwing down a trump card whilst having the same suit in his hand at the time, known in Fiji, as “yaraneke.”"

Daunitutu says the Rewa chief's belief the GCC play a pivotal role in Fiji’s political landscape is something even the former Indian NFP Leader, Jay Ram Reddy, and the current Indian FLP Leader, Mahendra Chaudary, have acknowledged.

"It’s foolish to think, race and ethnicity can be exorcised in Fiji and nor should it be because as the Gone Marama Bale rightfully alluded to, it’s recognised in International Forums, such as the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which was adopted it at its 62nd Session at its New York Headquarters on 13/09/2007.

"Graham’s biased support for Fiji’s illegal military junta has deprived him of the ability to see things as they truly are and to discern what not to take at face value. His limited repertoire of tools because of his biasedness reminds me of Abraham Maslow’s quote: “when the only tool you have is a hammer, every problem begins to resemble a nail.”

He adds: "Edmund Burke’s quote of “all that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing” is a timely warning for Fiji at this time, but unfortunately enforced by people like Graham.

"The Gone Marama Bale, knowing the cost to her own personal safety, chooses to speak on behalf of the countless Fijians and Fijian Chiefs who cannot freely speak their minds for fear of reprisal or the withholding of government development projects from their provinces or villagers.

"She has already been previously arrested and taken into Police custody in the middle of the night, like a fugitive (charges were later withdrawn because of insufficient evidence) - so she is fully aware of the implications of her letter, but it’s something she believes Voreqe Bainimarama needed to hear."

Regarding Davis' reference to Ro Teimumu as the Boadicea of the South Seas, Daunitutu notes: "The difference between Boadicea and the Gone Marama Bale is that Boadicea almost succeeded against the Romans, whereas the Gone Marama Bale with our assistance, other Freedom Fighters and other support will succeed against Fiji’s illegal military junta."

The FDFM president says he and the movement challenge Graham to be as courageous as the Gone Marama Bale the Roko Tui Dreketi and to fully disclose 'his interest regarding Fiji’s illegal military junta, rather than hiding behind the fa├žade of an Independent Journalist, which he certainly isn’t.

"If Graham cannot take this courageous stance, then I suggest he divert his attention elsewhere because we’re talking here about innocent people’s lives and the deprivation of their rights and freedoms, which was usurped by Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama in his December 2006 coup."

FDFM rebuttal of Graham Davis story

Pro-regime journalist accuses Rewa chief of 'playing the race card'

Australian journalist Graham Davis' attempt to diminish the Rewa Chief, Ro Teimumu Kepa, following her second letter to Fiji's illegal leader, Frank Bainimarama, sees him predictably accusing her of 'playing the race card'.

In an article which appeared first on his blog and then pro-regime publications including the Fiji Sun and Pacific Scoop, Davis infers Ro Kepa is provoking unease and makes out there is 'wide concern' about her use of the word 'calamity' in the following comment to Bainimarama: "The revolutionary changes you are making cannot be made without the involvement of the GCC. Any calamity between the races or even between indigenous Fijians themselves can only be resolved with the involvement of the GCC."

Davis' stories appeared under the heading 'Paramount chief deals the race card' and 'Paramount chief deals the 'skeletons' race card'. It is published here and will be followed by a response from Fiji's pro-democracy movement. Ro Kepa's letter is at the end of Davis' story.

By Graham Davis

A titanic struggle looms between the old and new orders in Fiji for the hearts and minds of the indigenous majority – the i’taukei. It’s a struggle that will determine the future for all Fiji citizens and on present indications, the portents don’t look good. Because the old order – the i’taukei chiefs – seem determined to make race the centerpiece of their campaign, to mine all the old prejudices that have retarded independent Fiji’s development right from the start.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Fiji Women's groups want representation at political and constitutional level

Women reps at the Forum. PHOTO: femLINKpacific
Fiji women want a Constitution that requires political parties to have at least 50 percent women candidates and the Constituent Assembly to be 50% women.

They also want an immediate return to democratic and civilian leadership and reject any involvement of the RFMF Land Force Commander in the process of constitution making and electoral reform processes.

Veena Singh Bryar PHOTO: femLINKpacific
Women's group met for the first time since the 2006 coup at a three day Forum to discuss women's participation in the national democratic process.
  
Aquila Yabaki PHOTO: femLINKpacific
Represented were the National Council of Women, FemLINKpacific, Fiji Womens Rights Movement, Na I Soqosoqo Vakarama i Taukei, Citizens Constitutional Forum and women from the community.