Politics

PM Bainimarama: Cpt Brown’s leadership values guided his decisions

SOME of the decisions and actions taken by the Government was inherited from the leadership values of first-ever Commander of the Fijian Navy Captain Stanley Brown. Fijian Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama shared this in Parliament...

2019 Corrections Service Amendment Bill enacted

THE Corrections Service Amendment Bill 2019 was enacted in Parliament this morning. Under this new law, prisoners for whom non-parole periods have been fixed by the court will now serve the entire term of the non-parole period. Additionally, the calculation for the date of release of a prisoner must not take into account the non-parole...

‘Projected debt for 2020 is $6b’

FIJI’S total debt in July 2020 is projected to be about $6.18 billion, says National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad. He said this could happen if Government fulfilled its borrowing obligations of $1.019b under the 2019-2020 budget and met projected loan repayments of more than $617 million. Speaking in Parliament this week, he said...

Restructuring of police force

POLICE constables were sitting on an annual salary of $9000 in 2006, Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum told Parliament yesterday. He said just recently this year their salaries had increased to between $16,000 and $18,000 per annum. Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said Government had invested millions of dollars in restructuring the Fiji Police Force. He said police officers who...

Biman: FijiFirst’s policies more about politics not economics

IT is the worst kept secret in Fiji that the Government has run out of money. This was the message from National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad to Parliament this week. “I am genuinely worried for Fiji’s short-term economic future,” he said. “The FijiFirst party has no plan to resolve it. “For years their...

MP sheds light on hardships faced by Fijians

NATIONAL Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad says the situation in Fiji is grim. Speaking in Parliament this week, he claimed the cost of living was rising to the point of being unaffordable. He said the health sector was facing issues with patients in Serua and Namosi not able to have basic ultra-sound scans at...

A-G attacks Opposition

ATTORNEY-GENERAL Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has labelled Opposition MPs as a bunch of people who deliberately hide facts. Speaking in Parliament yesterday, he said the level of hypocrisy from the MPs was a concern. “They don’t know how to remodel themselves to be an effective Opposition and they are not used to being in the Opposition.” He...

‘Government has betrayed youths’

THE FijiFirst Government has betrayed the youths of this country by failing to live up to its promises, says Opposition spokesman for youth and sports Ratu Suliano Matanitobua. He made the comments while speaking in response to President Jioji Konrote’s Parliament opening speech. Ratu Suliano said Government duped youths by promising them one laptop per...

Reduction in grant a broken promise, says Ratu Suliano

THE reduction in education grants to schools is another example of the FijiFirst Government’s failure to deliver on its promises to the youth. This was highlighted by Opposition spokesman for youth and sports Ratu Suliano Matanitobua in his response to President Jioji Konrote’s Parliament opening speech. Ratu Suliano said there was a danger youths and...

Call for Opposition leader to resign

OPPOSITION leader Sitiveni Rabuka should resign from his position for the betterment of the Social Democratic Liberal Party and the country. This was the view expressed by Leader of Government in Parliament Inia Seruiratu on Wednesday. He did not mince his words when he informed Parliament that the Prime Minister would not resign from his...

Radrodro claims Severe TC Winston damaged schools yet to be repaired

TWO schools damaged during Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston in 2016 have still not been rebuilt, claims Opposition MP Salote Radrodro. The schools are Yacata District School and Avea District School. “I know I have brought these cases up in this House on few occasions, but still, even though we have heard from the Honourable Minister...

Meth arrests raises risk of HIV/AIDS: Adi Litia

OVER 100 arrests a month for methamphetamine raises the risk for the spread of HIV/AIDS. This was told to Parliament by Opposition MP Adi Litia Qionibaravi, who said she was dismayed when she was informed about this by the UNAIDS regional representative at a recent Speaker’s Debate on HIV/AIDS in Sigatoka. She highlighted this in...

Opposition questions Government’s role in finding missing children

OPPOSITION MP Salote Radrodro has questioned the role of Government in finding the missing children in Fiji. On October 15, The Fiji Times reported that since 2014, a total of 723 children were reported to be missing, of which 37 are still missing. “And what is the Government doing to find these missing children?,” she...

21st November

Dr Waqainabete: Allowance for MPs paid by Government

OPPOSITION members of parliament were today reminded that the allowance they received in every engagement was Government money. The reminder came from Health and Medical Services Minister Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete as he delivered his response to President Jioji Konrote’s opening address. “I hear some MPs from the other side usually ask for their allowances in...

Prof Prasad reminds Minister Sudhakar not to mislead Parliament

MINISTER for Lands Ashneel Sudhakar was reminded today not to mislead Parliament. National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad told the Minister not to mislead Parliament in the manner that he did yesterday by saying the rot in the sugar industry started after the 1987 coup when growers were chased and leases were taken over...

Secularism has nothing to do with leadership, says Prof Prasad

SECULARISM has absolutely nothing to do with leadership. National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad highlighted this today while responding to the President’s address on the opening of parliament. Prof Biman was referring to Opposition MP Mitieli Bulanauca’s address on Tuesday when he blamed the Secular State for the present state of leadership. “Nothing can...

Motion to debate 2018 FDB report passed

A MOTION for Members of Parliament to debate the Fiji Development Bank annual report 2018 was passed in Parliament this morning. Standing Committee on Economic Affairs chairman Vijay Nath said the bank had significantly contributed to the nation’s economic development over the past 50 years. He said a strategic plan was also set out by...

‘Reports of $3000 allowance a lie’

REPORTS that Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama was getting a daily allowance of $3000 is a lie, said Minister for Agriculture Dr Mahendra Reddy in Parliament yesterday. “Just on Monday, honourable Kuridrani said honourable PM is getting $3000 as daily allowance, no one is getting that kind of allowance, that’s an utter lie,” he said. Dr...

‘Matters settled’

FIVE days after Government revealed that “certain matters” relating to the Grace Road Church were currently being handled by the Employment Ministry and police, Minister for Employment Parveen Kumar told The Fiji Times that matters involving the group had been “settled”. Mr Kumar, however, did not disclose what the “certain matters” were and how they...

MP: Can State provide security

HOW can Government provide security to the Fijian people when its leaders are surrounded by security guards themselves. This was the question posed by Opposition MP Jese Saukuru yesterday in Parliament. He labelled the high number of security guards used by certain members of the FijiFirst Government as “ridiculous”. Mr Saukuru said this could indicate...

Concept a failure – parliamentarian

FIJI’s increasing food bill is a sign that Government’s “Green Economy” concept is a failure says Opposition MP Ratu Atonio Lalabalavu. Speaking in Parliament yesterday, he said the failure was further marked by increasing imports, a consumption-driven economy and the changing demographic dynamics where the majority of the population had become urban dwellers. Ratu Atonio...

Nursing stations, health centres ‘equipped’

NURSING stations and health centres around the country are well equipped and trained to do screening for high blood pressure (HPB), sugars levels and lifestyle interventions through special outpatient departments. Speaking in Parliament yesterday while responding to Opposition member of Parliament Salote Radrodro’s earlier statements, Assistant Minister for Health Alexander O’Connor said health and medical...

Budget reduction ‘slows services

THE quality of healthcare and medical services in the country has been compromised because of the reduction in the ministry’s budget says Opposition MP Ratu Atonio Lalabalavu. Speaking in Parliament yesterday, Ratu Atonio said the budget reduction would slow down the construction of numerous health centres, hospitals and implementation of necessary initiatives for improved service...

‘Reports of $3000 allowance a lie’

REPORTS that Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama was getting a daily allowance of $3000 is a lie, said Minister for Agriculture Dr Mahendra Reddy in Parliament yesterday. “Just on Monday, Honourable Kuridrani said Honourable PM is getting $3000 as daily allowance, no one is getting that kind of allowance, that’s an utter lie,” he said. Dr...

Bulitavu: Qorvis an unjust expense

GOVERNMENT’s engagement of Qorvis has been labelled an unjust expense, unprecedented and outsized. Opposition member of Parliament Mosese Bulitavu labelled the engagement “a political spin”. Mr Bulitavu said it was no accident that political spin was associated or linked to Svengali and Rasputin – great manipulators of truth. “For that reason, we see Qorvis paid...

Minister clarifies teachers’ pay issue

THE issue of teachers not getting paid on time did not mean the Education Ministry did not have the money, Education Minister Rosy Akbar said. She said when such issues crop up, it simply meant there were issues with the teachers’ contracts. She made the statement after Opposition Whip Lynda Tabuya told Parliament she was...

20th November

First home initiative benefited 2000-plus Fijians, says Minister

MORE than 2000 Fijians have benefited from the State’s First Home initiative over the last five years. This was confirmed in Parliament by Minister for Local Government, Housing and Community Development Premila Kumar yesterday. “Over the last five years, 2321 Fijians had benefited from the First Home Initiative. There has been a higher demand for...

Government’s development agenda questioned

GOVERNMENT’S development agenda was questioned in Parliament today. Opposition MP Jese Saukuru, while responding to the President’s address on the opening of Parliament, highlighted some examples from his province of Ba that the Government had paid in respect of ‘language of development’. “While I wish to thank the Government for donating a school bus via...

Proceedings to go live

PROCEEDINGS of all Parliamentary Standing Committees will be broadcast live from next year. Speaking at the launch of the committee broadcast systems in Parliament yesterday, Australian High Commissioner John Feakes said it would allow people to be more informed with the work of Parliament. “This demonstrates to people that the work of Parliament doesn’t end...

Come clean on Grace Road

NATIONAL Federation Party parliamentarian Lenora Qereqeretabua says Government must come clean on its relationship with the controversial religious group, Grace Road. “You say you are a Government that is transparent and accountable, so tell us — what is the real relationship between Government and Grace Road?” She challenged Government in her response to President Jioji...

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