Friday, March 16, 2012

SDL Meeting Permit Late Approval After Initial Rejection

"Rejected then approved by which time it was too late for a meeting!''

That was the story on the application to have a meeting by the SDL Party in Fiji. That is also the ongoing reality of restrictions faced by people in Fiji under the repressive regime run by Dictator Bainimarama in curtailing their rights and freedoms as citizens and groups in just going about their everyday life. Indeed that is the very environment under which the consultation over the regime's new constitution is to occur in Fiji. 

Groups still have to apply for approval just to meet even to discuss their involvement in the consultation, as the SDL party wanted. By the time approval came, after initial rejection, it was too late to meet. Now they may well have to apply for another permit for another meeting! How repressive and restrictive is that? That is life in Fiji under the Dictator Bainimarama and talk about citizens able to freely discuss and contribute to the new constitution is all pretense and a farce to placate sympathy from detractors and overseas nations. 

The reality on the ground in Fiji is far from free and fair. The illegal regime still have a tight grip on matters of law and order, the judiciary and how government money is spent. No way exist for citizens to find out about the regime's decision-making process and how it accounts for spending the public purse.
Dictator Bainimarama barking out orders!
In fact as is already happening, Dictator Bainimarama is already stipulating what goes into the constitution and what doesn't. It makes a mockery and a farce of the consultation process. Yet, he is being outsmarted and already ridiculed by other political leaders like Qarase and Chaudhry in responding to some regime positions, now that they are able to voice their opinions, unlike before with the existence of the draconian Public Emergency Regulations (PER). Bainimarama looks and sounds shallow, naive and nakedly unintelligent when compared to the two political leaders. It doesn't bode well for Bainimarama if he wants to get into real politics unlike the situation he has been used to in "dispatching orders that can't be questioned". Welcome to the real world and you are so unmatched to foot it with others much more equipped to provide political leadership over the people of Fiji. 

As we have all been used to, Bainimarama's normal reaction to those questioning his statements is to bark at them and not the issues being commented on. He really must learn to focus on the issues and as Chaudhry correctly observed; '' he must learn to take criticisms and respond rationally''. But alas, that will be like changing the spots on a tiger's back! Bainimarama is pre-programmed to bark orders and not put up with anyone speaking back at his pronouncements. Such is the mindset he has as a military man and one with less than average intelligence, as is universally acknowledged. Unfortunately for Fiji that is the unelected leader it currently has and they don't deserve it one bit.

Read below the off again, on again, story on the SDL application for a meeting!

Fiji Village News

SDL Leader Qarase
Police have now approved the permit application made by the Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua Party to conduct a meeting after thorough consideration.

Yesterday Police had rejected the SDL Party’s application to have a meeting in Suva.

SDL Leader Laisenia Qarase said they were planning to have a meeting of less than ten people regarding the constitution consultation process yesterday.

Police have stressed that all political parties and other organisations are allowed to hold meetings subject to the laws of the country.

Permits will be approved with the view to ensuring that law and order is maintained, and that no meetings either directly threaten or limit the ability of Fijians, as individuals or groups, to freely discuss and contribute to the upcoming consultations process for a new constitution.

We contacted Qarase this morning and he says the permit approval came in late for yesterday’s meeting and they could not meet.

They will now try to find out if they need to apply for another permit to meet on another day. 

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