Fiji MPs cases adjourned to November, Parliament prorogued

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Six current and one former Member of Parliament appeared in court today in relation to charges laid by the Fiji Independent Commission against Corruption.

SODELPA MPs Salote Radrodro, Peceli Vosanibola, Niko Nawaikula, Adi Litia Qionibaravi, Simione Rasova and Ratu Suliano Matanitobua are charged with giving false information to public servant and obtaining financial advantage.

Also in court was former government MP Vijendra Prakash who will have a hearing on 17 November, for an application by FICAC to transfer the case to the High Court.

The SODELPA MPs will have the same hearing on 19 November.

However, MP Simione Rasova’s lawyer has told the court that they will oppose the application to expedite the hearing.

FICAC alleges these MPs lied about their residential addresses to obtain travel and accommodation allowances which they were not entitled to.

Meanwhile, Monday 25 October 2021 marks the prorogation of the third session for the current second term of Fijian Parliament.

Prorogation is the term for the formal end of a Parliamentary session.

Once Parliament is prorogued, Parliamentary business including Parliament sittings and Parliament Committee proceedings on Bills, motions and reports are suspended until the opening of a new Parliamentary session.

However, pursuant to the resolution of Parliament on Friday, 22 October 2021, the Standing Committee on Justice, Law and Human Rights will continue to undertake its committee mandate pertaining to the Fiji Institute of Chartered Accountants Bill 2021 so as to comply with the resolution of Parliament.

Parliament will stand prorogued from Monday, 25 October until the opening of the next session of Parliament which will be officiated by the new President-elect Ratu Wiliame Katonivere on Monday,22 November 2021

After the address by the President, Parliament would adjourn and then re-convene on Monday, 29 November 2021 for the week-long sitting.

The Parliament is committed to maintain vigilance and adherence to the COVID-safe measures and protocols in place nationwide, and in that regard, the State Opening of Parliament will only be attended by Chief Justice and four other Justices of Appeal and Puisne Judges.

SOURCE: FBC NEWS/FIJI PARLIAMENT