Monday, February 13, 2012

Mick Beddoes Statement on Unfair ‘State Proceedings Amendment Decree"


Mick Beddoes
 Subject:                      ‘State Proceedings Amendment Decree’

STATEMENT
‘Imposing the State Proceedings Amendment Decree just before the country starts the process of developing a new constitution in the lead up to the 2014 General Elections does nothing to inspire confidence that the ensuring debate and exchange between participants in the process will be open, free, transparent or fair’

Former Opposition Leader Mick Beddoes said in a statement today that Imposing the State Proceedings Amendment Decree just before the country starts the process of developing a new constitution in the lead up to the 2014 General Elections does nothing to inspire confidence that the ensuring debate and exchange between participants in the process will be open, free, transparent or fair’

Beddoes said when one considers that the military Regime has over the past 5 years exercised unilateral, absolute, unaccountable and non transparent control over every aspect of life in Fiji, imposing a variety of decrees that in the main have denied the very people they have sought to rule, of their basic and fundamental rights.

Beddoes said that when we look at Fiji’s current score card in terms of the people’s rights and liberties, employment opportunity, economic prosperity and  improvements in our level of poverty and housing, it should be as clear as daylight to everyone, including the Military themselves, that even with the imposition of decrees designed to silence ‘negative comments’ or ‘criticism’ it does not necessarily mean that having removed the criticism and negative comment, that somehow all of the plans and objectives that the government wants to put in place will somehow succeed? It does not as our current position today shows.

This Beddoes said is because by removing the people’s right to comment freely, the government also eliminates at the very least 50% of its natural reservoir of alternative thoughts and ideas that would come from an engaging ‘population‘. 

By removing the free flow and exchange of ideas and thoughts, the Regime saddles itself with a very limited and not necessarily genuine flow of thoughts and ideas from only those who support the notion that voting by the barrel of a gun is preferable to voting by the barrel of the ballot, and usually the basis of their thoughts stem from their vested interest and therefore it does not have the best interests of all the people in mind. 

Beddoes said repressive decrees that deny freedom of expression only serve to create a pool of dishonesty because those who do advise the government dare not tell the truth for fear of losing out of whatever benefit their support of the Regime brings them and when the Regime uses this pool of thoughts and ideas as the basis for its policies and objectives, it is not surprising that it ultimately fails to deliver.  

Beddoes said that anyone, whether a member of the current Regime, previous governments or parliaments or aspiring for the first time for the honor and privilege to serve the citizens of Fiji as their representative in the next parliament, must be prepared to have every word they say or policy they promote subjected to the full scrutiny of the people they seek to represent and be prepared ‘without hiding behind some so called privilege’ to defend and respond with the facts to back up whatever it is they say.

If the aspiring representatives can’t handle this kind of heat, then I suggest they get out of the kitchen and seek a career in a field where honesty, integrity and moral courage are not qualifying characteristics required.

Beddoes said if we accept that the intention of Regime for the 2014 elections is to usher in a new, progressive and fairer parliamentary system of government that will unify our people, and lead us all towards a prosperous and happy future? 

Then over the next 31 months instead of issuing more repressive and counterproductive decrees the Regime will need to start issuing decrees and statements that encourages not discourages our people to look positively towards the future and be courageous enough to embrace change.
 And as a government they should take a leaf out of the words uttered by former UK Prime Minister Margret Thatcher and I quote ‘where there is error, may we bring truth? Where there is doubt, may we bring faith? And where there is despair, may we bring hope unquote.

Truth, faith and Hope is what our people seek today and Truth, faith and hope is what our leaders, past, present and future must deliver and if they cannot or will not deliver this to the people then they should accept their limitations and short comings and forfeit the right they may feel they have to seek the peoples mandate to Lead.

Authorized By:          Mick Beddoes
 
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