NFP lodges permit for protest march

SATURDAY 5TH OCTOBER 2019

The National Federation Party has lodged an application with Police for a permit to march on Fiji Day to highlight the continuous delay in the conclusion of the investigation into the alleged assault of NFP President Pio Tikoduadua by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.

NFP General Secretary Seni Nabou has confirmed to the Fiji Times that an application on behalf of the Party was lodged by her with the Divisional Police Commander Southern on Wednesday, within the 7 day notice period stipulated by law.

Nabou said the application to police is for a permit to allow a maximum of 5,000 NFP members, supporters and well-wishers to march through Suva City from Rodwell Road to Constitution Avenue on Fiji Day on Thursday 10th October.

“The NFP wants to highlight issues about the rule of law, genuine democracy and is concerned about delays by police in concluding the investigation into the alleged assault of Mr Tikoduadua by the Prime Minister”.

“The fact that investigations were not completed is cemented by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions decision to return the file that police had submitted to it (ODPP) and has directed police to further investigate the matter”.

“Today is Day 57 since the alleged assault took place on August 9. It  was viewed by hundreds of thousands of people after footage of the event, which was captured on a parliament camera went viral on social media”.

“The NFP supporters are rightly asking why the alleged aggressor is still free to globe-trot and earn hefty salaries and perks while the victim has been suspended from parliament and has lost all  privileges including his salary”.

“On Fiji Day on 10th October, it will be 62 days since the alleged assault. This is causing serious disquiet and concern amongst our supporters who want to demonstrate peacefully to highlight the issue”. “We have also written to the Fiji Roads Authority seeking permission to use the route  from Rodwell Road to Constitution Avenue on October 10”.

Authorised by:

Hon. Prof. Biman Prasad – Leader

NFP says First Government has made FSC Bankrupt

WEDNESDAY 1ST OCTOBER 2019

The continuous disastrous financial performance of the Fiji Sugar Corporation means the reality is that the technically insolvent FSC is now bankrupt, said National Federation Party Leader Professor Biman Prasad.

Professor Prasad said at no time in history has FSC  continuously suffered such huge losses like in the last decade.  For the financial year ending May 31, 2019, FSC recorded a consolidated loss of $23.1 million and an operating loss of over $80 million. Last year FSC announced a small profit of $800,000.   

“This is unprecedented. And blame for this lies entirely on the shoulders of  Prime Minister & Minister for Sugar, his Minister for Economy and the FSC Boards over the last decade”.

“What we are saying is no exaggeration”.

“This is because the Independent Auditor’s Report clearly states that uncertainty exists and this  casts doubts on the Corporation’s ability to continue as a going concern”.

“The Independent Auditors further state that the financial statements do not include any adjustments relating to the recoverability and classification of recorded asset amounts and classification of liabilities that might be necessary should the entity not continue as a going concern”.

“While the Auditors note that the current financial status is critically dependent on Government’s support, they point out government guarantees and possible more financial support is dependent on the price of sugar, the quantity and quality of cane supply and success of mill improvements”.

The NFP Leader said the Independent Auditors could not have been  more direct and forthright about the extremely bleak reality facing FSC and the sugar industry.

“The irony is that what the Auditors point out has seemingly been done by both the Bainimarama led military regime and  the Fiji First Government through pumping in of millions of dollars supposedly aimed towards increasing sugarcane production and providing incentives to cane growers”.

“But this has not happened. Cane  and sugar production have declined by almost 50% from the pre 2006 coup levels”. The number of active growers has drastically fallen by almost 6,000 in the last 12 years”.

“Despite this the Prime Minister, his Minister for Economy, and the FSC Board that has been almost entirely led by two expatriate Chairmen for 12 years continue to claim how they have revitalised the industry and FSC”.

“The current government has made diabolical decisions, resulting in stupid policies being unilaterally implemented.”

 “They have continued to reject our calls for bipartisanship to collectively work together and find meaningful solutions to resuscitate the industry and FSC”.

“Any business cannot run without a quality and quantity supply of its core product. IN FSC’s case it is sugarcane to produce sugar”.

“And this government’s efforts to incentivise growers to do just this has been a colossal failure that has led FSC to a point of financial collapse”.

“This is the sad and painful legacy of the Fiji First government”.