Thursday, March 15, 2012

Its for the People to Decide - Chaudhry Tells Unelected Dictator Bainimarama

Fiji Village News
I will convince govt: Ratu Naiqama March 15, 2012 05:24:59 PM A+ A- | print | email | mobile Bookmark and Share Fiji’s Cakaudrove Province paramount chief, the Tui Cakau, Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu will now place his focus on convincing the Bainimarama government to re-establish the Great Council of Chiefs. Speaking to FijiLive, Lalabalavu said the GCC plays an important role in Fiji and he hopes the government will reconsider its decision. Lalabalavu said he will also be raising this issue during the constitution consultation process. “I am so keen on taking part in the constitution consultation process and will raise other issues but we will cross that bridge when we get there,” he said. After 136 years in existence, the GCC was abolished last Friday when the President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, had signed the I-Taukei Affairs Revocation Regulation.

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Mahendra Chaudhry
Whether Laisenia Qarase, Mahendra Chaudhry or anyone else for that matter, are needed or not is for the people to decide through the democratic process of free, fair and credible elections.

These are the comments of the Fiji Labour Party Leader, Mahendra Chaudhry following the Prime Minister's comments aired on Legend FM that Qarase and Chaudhry are not needed at this stage.

Commodore Bainimarama has stated that Qarase and Chaudhry should go to the constitutional commission instead of talking about issues everyday.

He also said that they are not needed at this stage.

Chaudhry said that the SDL and the Labour Party have a significant following based on the seats they held after the 2006 elections, and this is sufficient mandate for them to be actively involved in Fiji's political processes.

He said no one should be shut out as the nation is now engaged in the constitutional process
.


Fiji's government should now stop ruling by decree and leave all issues, however contentious, to the constitutional review process, says the Citizens Constitutional Forum. CCF chief executive Reverend Akuila Yabaki said in a statement the government’s decision to abolish the Great Council of Chiefs asks questions about earlier assurances that all constitutional issues must be openly debated and discussed with the people of Fiji. Yabaki said the Bainimarama government must desist from ruling by decrees especially if they are determined and drafted without any real due process involving the views of the people and more importantly if they discriminate against citizens or any particular group. He said this sort of decision-making may make the public feel disaffected and excluded from participating in the constitution formation, before the process even starts. Reverend Yabaki said in 2004 a review team had emphasised the need for the GCC to be independent of government and had suggested that in its existing form the GCC was vulnerable to political manipulation. The CCF shared this concern especially when the high chiefs allowed themselves to be spokespersons for the Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua and thereby brought discredit on the council and the whole chiefly system. “However, the constitutional development process now presents an opportunity for the people of Fiji to have their say in reviewing the roles and responsibilities of the GCC, including its composition, whether such an institution is actually necessary in this day and age, what roles can chiefs or a chiefly body play in nation building, and the role it can play to safeguard the interest of all citizens,” said Reverend Yabaki. “The role of the GCC was previously enshrined in the constitution, and is therefore a matter which needs to be put on the table for open discussions before a final decision is made. This is the expected purpose of the constitution consultation process,” he said. Reverend Yabaki said the structure and role of the Presidential authority is also a constitutional concern, to be debated fairly by the country and its citizens. “As government announced, it is imperative that the people’s voice is reflected in such constitutional decisions.” The CCF said this should be paramount in efforts to ensure free and open dialogue in drafting and formulating the Constitution which would take Fiji towards democratic elections. By Farzana Nisha

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Fiji’s former Prime Minister and Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry says it is for the people to decide whether leaders like him and fellow former deposed Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase were needed. He said the government should understand that leaders are chosen by the people in a democratic setup. He made the comment while responding to Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama’s statement yesterday that leaders like Chaudhry and Qarase are not wanted in the country. “Whether Laisenia Qarase, Mahendra Chaudhry or anyone else for that matter are needed or not is for the people to decide through the democratic process of free, fair and credible elections,” he said. “As the leaders of mainstream political parties which between them held 68 of the 71 seats in the House of Representatives prior to the military takeover of 2006, they have a substantial following.” “This fact itself is sufficient mandate for them to be actively involved in Fiji’s political processes.” “Now that the nation is engaged in the constitutional process, there should be no question of shutting anyone out.” “The government needs to adopt a mature approach to this exercise and that means that the views of everyone must be heard.” “Only then can the process be considered inclusive, participatory and transparent.” Chaudhry said the FLP intends to remain active in Fiji’s political life. By Reginald Chandar

Read more at: http://www.fijilive.com/news/2012/03/people-not-govt-will-decide-on-us-chaudhry/40870.Fijilive
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Fiji’s former Prime Minister and Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry says it is for the people to decide whether leaders like him and fellow former deposed Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase were needed. He said the government should understand that leaders are chosen by the people in a democratic setup. He made the comment while responding to Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama’s statement yesterday that leaders like Chaudhry and Qarase are not wanted in the country. “Whether Laisenia Qarase, Mahendra Chaudhry or anyone else for that matter are needed or not is for the people to decide through the democratic process of free, fair and credible elections,” he said. “As the leaders of mainstream political parties which between them held 68 of the 71 seats in the House of Representatives prior to the military takeover of 2006, they have a substantial following.” “This fact itself is sufficient mandate for them to be actively involved in Fiji’s political processes.” “Now that the nation is engaged in the constitutional process, there should be no question of shutting anyone out.” “The government needs to adopt a mature approach to this exercise and that means that the views of everyone must be heard.” “Only then can the process be considered inclusive, participatory and transparent.” Chaudhry said the FLP intends to remain active in Fiji’s political life. By Reginald Chandar

Read more at: http://www.fijilive.com/news/2012/03/people-not-govt-will-decide-on-us-chaudhry/40870.Fijilive
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