Call it as it is

January 17, 2008 at 8:58 am 2 comments

*FDN nailed it on the head. Reposted for all to view.

If we learned anything from yesterday’s inaugural meeting of the National Council for Building a Better Fiji, it was this:

When someone uses armed force to seize power from a democratically-elected government and then proclaims barely a year later that he wants his nation to be “truly democratic” you know there is something seriously wrong.

In the case of Fiji, what is seriously wrong is the man with a gun.

When Voreqe Bainimarama pointed that gun at Fiji’s head on 5 December 2006 he justified his action on the grounds they were necessary to “rid Fiji of corruption” and carry out a “clean-up campaign.”

But Bainimarama has not only failed spectacularly to produce any real evidence of corruption (except within his own administration)/ his regime has committed gross human rights abuse, compromised the judiciary and sent the economy into a nosedive.

Yet, despite all this, we had cause for hope. At the 38th Pacific Forum Meeting in Tonga on 17 October Bainimarama pledged that Fiji would have a general election in “early 2009.”

But this proved to be a hollow promise, as demonstrated when the dictator went into a furious back-pedalling mode and stated on Thursday 10 January that the election promised for March 2009 would not be held until the charter was “fully implemented.”

Does that make sense? Well, this apparent conundrum only makes sense if you know the facts.

FACT ONE: Bainimarama’s real purpose in staging the coup was to extinguish the near-completed investigation into his involvement in the murder of five soldiers in November 2000.

FACT TWO: The corruption scenario was a diversionary tactic. The coup was all about enabling Bainimarama to disarm the police, remove the highly competent (and honest) police commissioner, Andrew Hughes, and thus put an abrupt end to an investigation that could have led to substantial jail time.

FACT THREE: If it is not drawn up and implemented under the aegis of a legally elected parliament the so-called people’s charter has no legal or constitutional basis in Fiji (which, as it happens, also applies to the “powers” of all the office bearers in the current “interim” administration!)

FACT FOUR: The current junta is using the charter as a means to validate its hold on power by providing a means to dishonour the undertaking made to the Pacific Forum leaders (and to the rest of the world, when you think about it).

FACT FIVE: All of the above means that in the eyes of the international community Fiji remains a pariah state and yesterda/s guff about “culturally vibrant” democracies will not make one iota of difference.

FACT SIX: Democracy does not happen because one man says it is going to happen. Democracy happens when ALL the people are involved.

FACT SEVEN: The only “way forward” is for Bainimarama to lower his gun. He should take his troops back to the barracks and let the people of Fiji rebuild their democracy by the time-honoured method, known as free elections.


Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

A fair challenge Screw the RFMF, we need these guys

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. natewaprince  |  January 17, 2008 at 6:58 pm

    Amen to that JD.

  • 2. Save the Sheep  |  January 17, 2008 at 11:16 pm

    Yeap, nothing more to say really. This is the CRUX of the matter.

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