The Leader of the National Federation Party Professor Biman Prasad says the Director of Fiji Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Commission Mr Ashwin Raj has thoroughly and unapologetically compromised his neutrality by demonstrating his political bias and is unfit and unsuitable to hold the position of an important independent office.
“By making a volatile political comment that these might be desperate times for me as Leader of NFP and the Party itself and that I should conduct myself with integrity and not mislead the public, Mr Raj has proven beyond any doubt whatsoever that he is completely partial and biased towards Fiji First Party that is the current government”.
“By that same token, it is not unreasonable to assume that his neutrality and impartiality as Chairman of the Media Industry Development Authority is also under question, because he will turn a blind eye to frivolous comments, half-truths and misinformation being broadcast or printed about me and the NFP”.
On Saturday 2nd September Professor Prasad in an interview with the Fiji Times pointed out that recent changes to the Finance Instructions 2010 means Independent Offices like the Fijian Election Office and Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Commission cannot be subjected to a special audit unless requested by authorities in charge of independent offices.
In a reply to the Fiji Sun last Friday, Mr Raj also blamed The Fiji Times for not seeking his comments to balance the story.
Professor Prasad described Mr Raj’s “long-winded” explanation as “nonsense”.
“Mr Raj has not addressed the issue of why annual reports of MIDA for the last 7 years have not been tabled in Parliament. He should clearly state whether or not he will comply with the amendment to Finance Instructions and request for a special audit”.
“He nimbly evades the issue altogether. The pitiful irony is that he emphasises the neutrality and independence of his office and yet shows his political bias by trying to malign me. This is hypocrisy of the highest order”.
The NFP Leader said Mr Raj should resign and contest the general elections for Fiji First since he has shown his bias to all and sundry.
“Mr Raj is obviously protecting himself and Government. He cannot be trusted to defend human rights of our ordinary citizens especially those who have had their human rights violated by government agencies”.