Shocking

The National Federation Party says it is shocking that two years on from Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston, 50 percent of homes on Koro Island have not been rebuilt while villagers live in makeshift shelters.

NFP Leader Professor Biman Prasad said even more alarming is the fact that the hardware companies have already been paid for cards issued to the villagers under the Help for Homes Initiative when reportedly no delivery was made

“While the hardware companies have received the money for material to be supplied to the affected villagers on Koro Island, the victims of the monstrous cyclone are still waiting for the material and once again have a decent shelter and roof over their heads”.

“We had raised this issue in December 2016 but the Attorney General had then treated it as a trivial matter, and later said the two companies who failed to supply material were not selected for the second round of the Help for Home Initiative and had also paid a unspecified fine”.

“14 months after we had raised our concern and two years on from Severe TC Winston, the Fiji Times revealed that half of the total number of homes on Koro, which was directly in the path of the Category 5 cyclone, have not been repaired while villagers are living in makeshift shelters”.

“Worse still, according to the news report, the invoices recording the purported delivery of materials have been signed without material actually reaching the victims”.

“Naturally the villagers feel robbed and cheated”.

“Anybody, let alone a government that professes equal citizenry and proclaims that the Bill of Rights on its 2013 Constitution more than adequately protects the weak and the vulnerable, should be greatly concerned and take immediate and decisive action”.

“We reiterate our call for a full and independent investigation into this fiasco because no business must be allowed to charge money for any service it cannot provide because it would be a scam to do so as it involves taxpayers funds”.

Suppression of freedom

The National Federation Party Leader Professer Biman Prasad says the refusal by Fiji Police Force to give a permit to the Fiji Trades Union Congress for a march and a rally is a government boasts it practices genuine democracy.

“The Fiji Police Force today faces humiliation for its decision to reject the permit. At the outset, it was based on a totally illogical reason that the FTUC National Secretary was under investigation”.

“Less than 18 hours later the Office of Director of Public Prosecutions ruled that the comments made by the National Secretary during a rally following a solidarity march for ATS workers in Nadi on 24th January do not constitute an offence”.

“It is therefore adundantly clear Police misled the workers of Fiji. If the National Secretary was still under investigation, then why was the file on him sent to the DPP for an assessment? The file is only sent to the DPP after investigations are complicated “.

“it is now also logical to ask whether the Police independently made its decision to reject the permit or was the Force influenced to do so”.

Professer Prasad said to prevent its image from being further tarnished, the Force has to come out clean and reveal the truth behind the decision to reject the permit on a non-existent issue because “it has now been caught misleading the workers”.

“This is a serious issue because it has directly breached fundamental freedoms of the workers of the country and indeed everyone who has planned to praticipate in the march to express solidarity and support the issues that where to be highlighted during the march”.

“Breach or violation of any freedom is a breach of human right and a case for the Human Rights and Anti- Discriminination Commission to establish what transpired”.

Authorised by:

NFP Leader

Professer Biman Prasad

NFP Leader – Permit refusal is suppression of freedom

 

 

 

Dugavatu Families still in Dark.

Residents of Dugavatu, Raki Raki are still awaiting the supply of electricity by FEA under rural electrification programme despite a promise made by the Prime Minister last year.

The Prime Minister Hon. Voreqe Bainimarama had last year on his “Consultation Visit” with his large entourage reportedly made the commitment at the Tataiya Memorial School to provide FEA power to the 37 cane farmers families residing in Dugavatu area.

The Dugavatu rural area which is located just 7 kilometers away from Raki Raki town has no piped water and electricity supply. Water supply is currently provided under the Community Project and is contributed and managed by the residents.

An NFP Team NFP led by Prof. Biman Prasad and General Secretary-Jagannath Sami met with the residents of Dugavatu last Tuesday. The residents during a “Talanoa Session “raised many concerns including the failure by government to fulfil its promise to supply electricity to the residents.

The NFP is calling on the Prime Minister to make good his promise to the people of Dugavatu and is hopeful that with the general elections nearing, the Prime Minister will fulfill his promise.
Last Friday the PM visited Raki Raki again as part of his consultation trip in the West.

Rural Ra residents awaiting electricity

NFP Leader says Not a genuine democracy

The National Federation Party says questions about impartiality of independent institutions established under the 2013 Constitution are justified and proves we are not a genuine democracy.

Party Leader Professor Biman Prasad says initial findings of the United Nations Human Rights Commissioner questioning the impartiality of independent institutions and the need to have a truly free and credible general elections vindicates the belief of Opposition Parties.

The UN Human Rights Commissioner Zaid Ra’ad Al Hussein questioned whether independent institutions like Constitution Offices Commission, Fijian Elections Office and the Human Rights and Anti Discrimination Commission are truly autonomous based on a basic structural flaw.

Professor Prasad said that flaw is simply and undeniably the politisation of the independent institutions.

“The Constitution Offices Commission has two Government members who have close links to the Fiji First Party. We know one of them is an active fundraiser for Fiji First. They are also on other Boards either as members or Chairman”.

“And we have evidence of their close political ties to Fiji First”.

Professor Prasad also condemned the investigation of journalists from Islands Business saying it was a joke that they are alleged to have breached Public Order Act for simply reporting something that may or may not be wrong.

Three journalists from Islands Business were questioned for the second time by officers from CID yesterday.

“There are procedures to deal with such matters. And this is definitely not hauling them in or asking them to come to CID to be questioned”.

“This was also raised by the UN Human Rights Commissioner”.

 

http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=435063

 

NFP Leader accuses PM of spreading Fake news about sugar

The National Federation Party has accused the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama of blatantly misleading cane growers and the people of Fiji about sugar cane industry on the face of indisputable facts which prove beyond doubt the sharp decline of the industry under his watch in the last 11 years.

NFP Leader Professor Biman Prasad said Mr Bainimarama should be ashamed because sugar industry statistics paint a very bleak picture and confirms the failure of the military regime and the Fiji First government to revive the industry.

“In 2006 the four mills crushed 3.2 million tonnes of cane and produced 310,000 tonnes of sugar”.

“Since then, both sugarcane sugar production has declined steadily after the military coup of 5th December 2006. In 2017 the industry produced 1.63 million tonnes of cane and 180,000 tonnes of sugar. Active cane growers declined from a little over 18,000 to almost 12,000 over this period”

“These are official industry statistics. How can someone, let alone a Prime Minister mislead people on the face of this?”

“The problem with the Prime Minister is he just reads speeches penned for him by taxpayers’ funded Qorvis Communications. He should realise that Qorvis is misleading him”.

During the consultation held at Lautoka on Thursday Mr Bainimarama said the industry was in steady decline until his Government intervened to put it on better footing.

The PM said the Opposition are not providing real solutions but making big promises like giving $100 per tonne and added “securing a future for the industry isn’t about smiles and sitting around the grog bowl spinning fantasies”.

Professor Prasad said it was clear that Mr Bainimarama was attacking the NFP as “we have announced that we will implement a minimum guaranteed price of $100 per tonne as cane payment and also announced that we would build a new sugar mill in Rakiraki”.

“Mr Bainimarama is using taxpayers’ funds to campaign and malign the Opposition. Taxpayers’ funds are being abused to spread lies in the hope that his circus tricks influences growers and their families to vote for him”.

“We challenge him to a debate together with his Qorvis spin doctors that will prove once and for all how the industry has been run down by people who cannot differentiate the root of a sugarcane from its top and are leading growers up the garden path”.

http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?ref=archive&id=434988

 

Romanu Tikotikoca withdraws his provisional candidacy

The National Federation Party has today received a formal notification from Mr Romanu Tikotikoca, withdrawing his provisional candidacy of the Party.

We have accepted Mr Tikotikoca’s reasons for  the withdrawal and believe it was the right thing to do following allegations levelled against him.

We wish Mr Tikotikoca well.

Authorised by:

Professor Biman Prasad

NFP Leader

NFP Leader confirms withdrawal of provisional candidacy

Statement by Mr Romanu Tikotikoca on allegations reported by the Fiji Sun and Fiji Broadcasting Corporation

From Sunday February 11 2018 to date, two media outlets namely the Fiji Broadcasting Corporation and the Fiji Sun have been prominently reporting allegations that during my tenure as Fiji’s High Commissioner to Papua New Guinea, I purportedly raped a maid working at the High Commissioner’s residence.

I absolutely and categorically deny the allegation, which is a complete fabrication and lie.  It is a despicable attempt to defame my character and bring ridicule and contempt to my family and I.

Therefore, I will pursue legal action against both the Fiji Broadcasting Corporation and the Fiji Sun.

I have today also deemed it proper to withdraw my provisional candidacy of the National Federation Party as I proceed to clear my name. This is a matter of integrity purely for me and my family and not of NFP.

May God bless Fiji.

Romanu Tikotikoca

25 Jale Street

Kalabu Housing

Nasinu

Ph: 3393365

Statement by Mr Romanu Tikotikoca

Suppression of media freedom

The detention of three Islands Business magazine journalists for alleged Public Order Act offences is deeply concerning.  It is a clear warning of how the Fiji First Government will behave if it is re-elected to office this year.

Islands Business magazine posted a story last week suggesting that the employment contract of Magistrate Andrew See had ended. Mr See had ruled in favour of ATS workers last month in the Employment Relations Tribunal. The Police reacted by questioning Islands Business journalists and searching their offices and homes.

The journalists were told that they were suspected of “maliciously fabricating” information or spreading “false news reports to create public alarm” under s.15 of the Public Order Act.

We do not yet know if the story is wrong. But that is not the point.  How could a news story about a magistrate’s appointment cause public alarm?

If a news media report is wrong, then there are legal remedies available against the publisher. You do not detain the publisher and investigate him for a crime.

This Government now wants to suppress any news reporting by anyone of anything that it does not like, using any excuse.

A week ago, the Attorney-General said he wanted to regulate social media. This was because, he said, people should not post pictures of a man and a woman sitting together after they have married other people.

This government wants to control everything we say and all the information we receive. I believe they will try to do this through repressive new laws for both mainstream and social media.

I also believe they will stay very quiet about this until after the election.   But imagine what will happen if they are given four more years to do anything they want.

Detaining journalists for doing their jobs is about spreading fear, and reminding the Government’s critics about what can be done to them for speaking out.

If you value your own freedom of expression; if you value the freedom of others to be able to give you information and opinions; you cannot vote for this government.

Authorised by: –

Pio Tikoduadua-President

NFP President condemns detention of journalists

 

ANNOUNCEMENT OF 31 PROVISIONAL CANDIDATES FOR NFP

Messages by Party Leader Professor Biman Prasad and Party President Mr Pio Tikoduadua

Professor Biman Prasad

Dear People of Fiji

Today is an extraordinary day. I am pleased, excited and honoured to announce to Fiji our first 31 2018 election candidates for NFP.

These are not ordinary people. No one in our team is. They have stepped forward, ready, willing and able to serve you. I am proud to present them to you. At this point, of course, they are provisional candidates only, because the formal election processes have yet to begin. But we want you, in the meantime, to get to know them, meet them, talk to them, and tell you how they – and we – can serve you better, inside and outside Parliament.

We have had 12 years of two-man government which has become increasingly controlling and restrictive. We have a government that works through threats and intimidation, free handouts and propaganda – all of which is paid for by our taxes. This is not democracy. It is dictatorship. It is long past the time for things to return to normal.  We need to be able to express ourselves freely, not be fearful and to all be able to participate in the governance of Fiji.

It is time for us to return to real team leadership in government– for you to have a group of people with skills and real-life experience who will serve you.  We will not be hiding behind security guards and driving in motorcades. We will not be paying ourselves thousands of dollars in travel allowances. We have already committed to cut the pay and allowances of government ministers by 25% until a proper exercise is done to work out fair and reasonable remuneration.

If you elect us, we will not threaten and intimidate people who criticise us. We will, like all governments do, make mistakes, and we will learn from those mistakes and our critics. We will be transparent. We will not hide how we spend your money or how we make decisions. These are some of the basic requirements of good government.

We would be very humbled and honoured for you to invite them into your homes, communities and talanoa sessions so that you can make fully informed decisions on what you need from a Government that will listen and act in your best interest.

In the coming weeks we will be issuing our manifesto. We will be focused on housing, education, health and wages. We want to revive our sugar industry and to massively increase our agricultural sector. We also want to hear from the people of Fiji. We want to turn your ideas into action.

Judge for yourself. The Change that Fiji needs is here.

 

Mr Pio Tikoduadua

I join our Party Leader in welcoming and heralding our team to the people of Fiji.

We spent the last weekend together in a meeting of hearts, minds and purpose and like our Party Leader, I am very proud of the line-up we are presenting.  We have a team of people who are closely involved in their community. Many of them have long records of community service. They have a range of skills and experience. They have a deep understanding of the needs of people from all walks of Fiji life.

In nation-building, it is necessary to be able to come together to talk, deliberate and reconcile our worldviews and then forge a pathway together. We are, after all, only as strong as our weakest link. You will find boldness, strength and united purpose in NFP.

From the youngest to the eldest member of #TeamFeds, we have heard you, and we know what is needed to raise Fiji to greatness.

We are all proud to belong to a strong, 54 year-old Party, one that has shaped Fiji’s history in positive, democratic and principled ways.  All of Fiji’s other political parties come and go.  We were Fiji’s first political party, and we are still here – because we have deep connections in the community, long experience of solving people’s problems at grassroots level and loyal supporters who have never left us. We are a party which, through all of Fiji’s turbulent times, have understood the value of democratic principles, dialogue and compromise.

 

This initial and exciting announcement is but a taste of what is to come.

Expect Us. Expect Change

 

List of 31 Provisional Candidates of NFP: February 2, 2018

 

1) Pio Tikoduadua

2) Ajay Kumar

3) Anshu Lata

4) Daven Naidu

5) Dhani Ram

6) Feroz Gulam Mohammed

7) Iosefo Nainima

8) Kavai Vunidogo

9) Kini Salabogi

10) Lenora Qereqeretabua

11) Manav Ram

12) Michael Brown

13) Dr Mohammed Yunush

14) Pradeep Chandra

15) Pushp Dass

16) Raj Kumar Rattan

17) Rajan Sami

18) Dr Richard Wah

19) Romanu Tikotikoca

20) Samuela Naicegucegu

21) Sandhya Bajpai

22) Satendra Kumar

23) Satya Shandil

24) Seremaia Tuwai

25) Shanal Sivan

26) Sila Balawa

27) Subrail Narayan

28) Vilitati Seru

29) Veniana Salabogi

30) Waisele Kanavo

31) William Lee

NFP ANNOUNCEMENT OF PROVISIONAL CANDIDATES – FEBRUARY 2018