Fiji President failed to protect the Constitution, claims Bainimarama


Fiji Opposition Leader Voreqe Bainimarama claims that President Ratu Wiliame Katonivere has failed to protect the 2013 Constitution.

In his response to the President’s opening speech in Parliament Monday, Bainimarama alleges that Ratu Wiliame has failed to protect the rule of law and has failed to halt the resulting chaos that is creeping in and the impending disaster that is going to befall the people of Fiji, the economy, and also its future generation.

Bainimarama claimed the President as the Head of State who rests the executive authority of the State and who is the commanding chief of the Republic of Fiji Military Force fails to acknowledge the fact that the Constitution which is supposed to uphold is stripped away almost daily.

“The President who we all looked up to because we believed he genuinely believed in the values of the Constitution has done an about turn. He has failed the Fijian people and will go down in history as the person who aided and abetted the most incompetent and divisive government.”

The Opposition Leader claimed that as the commanding chief, the President has failed to provide proper guidance to the RFMF. Bainimarama further claims that Ratu Wiliame, who previously espoused subscribing to the values of the Constitution, has tragically ignored the mockery that the Rabuka-led government has made of constitutional democracy.

“When we were in government and you were in Opposition, the then Opposition has chastised and breaded previous presidential statements because of political motivations, I do so today Mr Speaker but not for political reasons but because the president has failed to protect the constitution.”

Bainimarama alleged the government leader continues to issue verbal threats, and they are dividing Fiji so rapidly that it is shaking the Constitution’s safeguard of equal citizenship.

He labeled the statement propelled by the government, “Let love shine’ as the biggest con job, hypocritical, and a hoax.

Bainimarama said the coalition Government is immature, petty and insecure.

He referred to the recent FBC saga as one that “epitomises the disaster and chaos that is rapidly unfolding under this incompetent Rabuka led government.”

Bainimarama said the coalition is amateurish and beholden to an ethnonationalist agenda and a “bunch of incompetent people.”

He also ridiculed the matanigasau ‘farce’ which he said made a mockery of iTaukei culture.

Bainimarama attacked the coalition on many fronts including on the common name, religious freedom, not being inclusive.

Bainimarama said Government is setting out to destroy the constitutional democracy and modern and inclusive Fiji that the RFMF and FijiFirst worked so hard for.

He also accused the government of appointing its cronies and failed candidates to jobs without it being advertised, or applications or interviews being conducted.

Prime Minister Rabuka, speaking first, struck a more united and forward looking tone and called for dialogue and consultations on key national issues including the common name.

Rabuka also said increasing the retirement age from 55 to 60 and re-establishing the Higher Salaries Commission are two immediate changes the government has introduced in the civil service.

He said increasing the retirement age will give Fiji a greater return from institutional knowledge, experience, and skills and cater to the aspirations and needs of the civil service.

“It is imperative that the right people are appointed to boards are meant for membership, but also reflect the dynamics of our population diversity. Some appointments have already been made with the Fijian Broadcasting Corporation. It was imperative that a new board be appointed given the resignations of previous board members. The same applied to the Fiji Development Bank, the resignation prevented the meeting of the board due to a lack of a quorum. A meeting was urgently required to seek a guarantee extension which will be tabled in this honorable house later this week, as the current guarantee expires.”

Rabuka said with the assistance of the ministry, the Public Service Commission will develop guidelines and policies to provide better cohesion and coordination throughout the service, consistent with our determination for enhanced performance to benefit Fijians.

He said that the PSC will be given greater autonomy and responsibility within its constitutional mandate.

In addition, Rabuka states that the salaries commission will lead to greater consistency in administering remuneration for senior civil servants and CEOs of state-owned enterprises.

Rabuka further highlighted that the coalition government invited expressions of interest for board appointments, and over 1200 applications were received…. PACNEWS