Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Face up to your broken promises, Bainimarama told

Face up to your broken promises, Bainimarama told

8/18/2008


Interim Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama is avoiding the forum after breaking the promises he had made to leaders about election in early 2009, says New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark.
Speaking to NZPA last night, Ms Clark said the situation in Fiji is casting a stain in the Pacific.

Cdre Bainimarama said it was regrettable and unfortunate for Fiji not to participate because of the decision taken by the NZ Government to issue transit visas with restrictions to the Fiji delegation.

However, Ms Clark said they had given Cdre Bainimarama no excuse for avoiding to front up to Pacific leaders about plans to return Fiji to democracy.

“If that’s what he’s saying then I suspect that he was looking for an excuse,” she said.

“It was not NZ’s intention to provide him with an excuse not to come, which is why I agreed that he should be able to transit through Auckland airport.

“”I think it speaks volumes if they are not prepared to come and be accountable to forum leaders, but obviously we are going to await formal advice as to whether they are coming or not.”

Miss Clark said whether Cdre Bainimarama showed up or not, the forum would consider a ministerial contact group report into Fiji.

“I think it offers a way forward,” Miss Clark said of the yet to be released report.

“My assessment is that leaders feel that the events in Fiji are really casting a stain on the Pacific.

The leaders want to be seen and have the forum be seen to continue to be leading international opinion and action on the issue. So it’s going to be taken very seriously whether or not the commodore is there,” she added.

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