Thursday, August 27, 2009

UNITED NATIONS STILL ENGAGES FIJI SOLDIERS WHILE CITIZENS SUFFER UNDER MILITARY RULE ?




Posted:luveiviti@myvuw

Take a look at the number of Fiji soldiers still engaged with the United Nation Peace Keeping Force as at 31 July 2009.

Country UN Mission Description Members

Fiji

UNAMI Troop . . . . 221 = UNAMI 221

UNAMID Police . . . 13 =UNAMID 13

UNMIL Police . . . . 31 = UNMIL 31

UNMIS Police . . . . = 8

Military Observer . . . . = 6

UNMIS 14

UNMIT Military Observer . . . . = UNMIT 1

FIJI TOTAL = 280

Refer United Nation site: UN Mission detailed by country: http://www.un.org/Depts/dpko/dpko/contributors/2009/july09_3.pdf

  • Deploy to prevent the outbreak of conflict or the spill-over of conflict across borders;

  • Stabilize conflict situations after a cease fire, to create an environment for the parties to reach a lasting peace agreement;

  • Assist in implementing comprehensive peace agreements;

  • Lead states or territories through a transition to stable government, based on democratic principles, good governance and economic development. '

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Note we have made reference & quoted UN write-up on Fiji. When one searches its sites for report on current situation in Fiji be it Human Rights Abuse todate or stories of unstable government. The answer is ZERO.

  • What does that tells us? Is there a direct link between the current regime and the United Nations?

  • Or there is something going on with their representatives in Suva that the United Nations have decided to take a SOFT APPROACH' to Fiji's problem.

People of Fiji are looking for answers to these questions!!

United Nations's Statement on Rule of Law, quoted below excerpt states;

" For the United Nations, the rule of law refers to a principle of governance in which all persons, institutions, and entities, public or private, inclduing the state itself, are accountable to laws that are publicly promulgated, equally enforced and independently adjudicated, and which are consistent with international human rights norms and standards." unquote.

Why is it that United Nations appears to take a back sit while watching Fiji go to ruin at the hands of Military Dictatorship? Why are the UN continuing to engage Fiji soldiers for peace keeping mission?
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More dated article on Fiji appearing on United Nations Site - the best one can get.

Is this a joke?

** Fiji [24 Nov. 2008]

The Secretary-General has sent an exploratory mission to Fiji from 23 to 28 November. He has conveyed his hopes to the Interim Government that discussions with all stakeholders would lead to finding a mutually agreeable way forward on the political situation in Fiji.
The mission is headed by Tamrat Samuel from the UN Department of Political Affairs. While in Suva, the UN mission will meet with a broad range of national stakeholders, as well as with regional and international actors, especially the Pacific Islands Forum and the Commonwealth.


http://www.un.org/News/briefings/docs/2008/db081124.doc.htm

"For the United Nations, the rule of law refers to a principle of governance in which all persons, institutions and entities, public and private, including the State itself, are accountable to laws that are publicly promulgated, equally enforced and independently adjudicated, and which are consistent with international human rights norms and standards. It requires, as well, measures to ensure adherence to the principles of supremacy of law, equality before the law, accountability to the law, fairness in the application of the law, separation of powers, participation in decision-making, legal certainty, avoidance of arbitrariness and procedural and legal transparency."
(
S/2004/616, Report of the Secretary-General on The Rule of Law and Transitional Justice in Conflict and Post-Conflict Societies"
http://www.un.org/en/ruleoflaw/index.shtml

DID UNITED NATIONS REALLY BAR FIJI SOLDIERS??

UN bars Fijian soldiers
by medwar @ 2009

CANBERRA: The U.N. has barred Fijian soldiers from future peacekeeping missions in the latest sanction against the South Pacific nation's military rulers for suppressing democracy, Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said Tuesday.

The U.N. decision was announced as Fiji authorities detained a nationalist political party leader and five others for distributing pamphlets.

Australia successfully lobbied the United Nations to ban future deployments of the well-trained and well-regarded troops as a means of denying Fiji's flagging economy precious income from lucrative U.N. paychecks, Rudd said.

The U.N. Information Center in Australia could not immediately confirm the policy change Tuesday.

"The revenue remittances to Fiji from Fijian forces working with U.N. operations around the world are important sources of revenue back into the military families, in particular within Fiji," Rudd told reporters.

"Through our own interventions with the United Nations and supported by New Zealand and other countries, the United Nations now is not going to engage future or new Fijian troops for new operations," he added.

Rudd condemned Fiji for suspending the national constitution and press freedom as well as for undermining the independence of the judiciary. The island nation has been ruled by military leader Frank Bainimarama since a 2006 coup.

The U.N. decision apparently would not affect current Fijian peacekeeping missions.Fiji has up to 2,000 troops on U.N. peacekeeping duties in hotspots that include the Sinai, Iraq and the Sudan, with battalion-sized groups in both Iraq and the Sinai desert.In Iraq, hundreds of Fiji soldiers provide security for U.N.operations in the capital, Baghdad, as well as in Basra in the south and Irbil.Foreign exchange earnings the troops send home to their families are worth millions of dollars a year to the Fiji economy.

The cash remittances rank with tourism and sugar exports as the nation's top three foreign exchange earners in a crashing economy that recently devalued its local dollar 20 percent and imposed strict controls on cash transfers offshore in a bid to slow its dwindling foreign exchange reserve levels.

Fijian authorities also said Tuesday they had detained a nationalist political leader and five other men for distributing political pamphlets that could cause instability.Police Operations Director Waisea Tabakau said officers had arrested the general secretary of the nationalist Vanua Tako Lavo Party, Iliesa Duvuloco, and five others on Monday for allegedly violating the nation's emergency regulations by distributing propaganda.Bainimarama launched his 2006 coup to oust what he called a nationalist government that he accused of imposing "racist" policies against Fiji's large ethnic Indian minority. Bainimarama himself is from the indigenous Fijian majority.

The Vanua Tako Lavo Party seeks control by indigenous Fijians, and it opposes political or economic power being wielded by ethnic Indian Fijians, who make up about 37 percent of the population.

Police did not release details of the pamphlets they accused the men of distributing.The detentions were the first for alleged violation of the nation's public emergency regulations since they came into force April 10 when President Ratu Josefa Iloilo overthrew the constitution, sacked all judges and imposed a monthlong emergency.Iloilo took the steps in response to an Appeal Court ruling that Bainimarama's 2006 coup was illegal.

Under the emergency regulations, a person can be detained for seven days without charges if he or she is deemed to be a threat to the community and the country.The emergency regulations are due to expire in 12 days, unless the regime decides they should be extended.
Courtesy The Himalayan Times
http://bulafiji.blog.co.uk/2009/04/28/un-bars-fijian-soldiers-6025991/

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

A Winning Unity Award Speech by Rayhan Langdana @ NZ Diversity Awards last night @ Te Papa.

NZ Human Rights Commission
Race Unity Speech Award 2009
Winner: Rayhan Langdana - Yr 11, Wellington College, Wellington

Dear God, please make me white”, the non European child prayed after another day of being bullied at school for having brown skin.

Where do you think these words were spoken? Maybe in the deep south of the US? Perhaps in England in the early 60’s? No. These words were spoken in Island Bay, Wellington, New Zealand, 2009. I was shocked. To me, this kind of stuff only happened in the articles of the newspaper. But the harsh reality is that racial prejudice is alive and well in our own little antiseptic bubble at the bottom of the world. Little year 1’s at school taunt their classmates because that is the way they have been brought up. This raises the question: if kids are turning out like this, where do they learn it from? How would the father of the bully treat the new Chinese family who moved in down the street? How would his mother treat the little Indian girls selling Girl Guide biscuits?

It is children like the bully mentioned above who must quickly learn that good neighbours come from all races and cultures. The definition of neighbour is “a person who lives next to or near another”. However the word extends far beyond this dry dictionary definition. The kid you sat beside in year three, he was your neighbour. Your batting partner in the cricket team, he was your neighbour. The nice lady whose office was next to yours, she was your neighbour. Therefore the message that good neighbours come from all races and cultures is not only applicable to domestic life, but to school, recreation and the workforce. This makes the message doubly important to teach.

When I come back from hockey late on a Friday night, I drive down the street and smell the delicious aroma of beef rendang wafting over from the Hassans’ house at number 32. The Dales on the other side are having a barbeque, and the smell of grilling sausage is mouth watering. Our house is fragrant with the smell of mum’s special chicken curry. What does this show, besides making us all hungry? It shows just one of the countless streets in which families of completely different cultures live next to each other in perfect harmony. When mum cooks a large amount of some amazing Indian food, my brother and I are dispatched to the houses on either side of ours bearing containers of it to give to our neighbours and last weekend we all went over to Tony and Carols’ for a BBQ. We’ve learnt to accept the fact that when Ramadan ends, the Hassans have guests whose cars take up the entire street and who party until the wee hours of the morning. We’ve learnt to realise that Guy Fawkes Night for the Dales means alarming booming noises until what feels like sunrise, and both our neighbours have learnt that on Diwali, they may as well come and join the party at our house because they’re not going to get much sleep!

This relationship between our three families began as wary suspicion. The Dales were courteous enough when we first moved in, but it was apparent that they were unsure of what to expect: their previous neighbours of 20 years had been European like them. However, this soon shifted to tolerance and then to friendship. Why was this? Because they looked past the colour of our eyes, hair and skin. They looked past our accents and made the effort to get to know us as individuals. After that, it was smooth sailing. In my opinion, a good neighbour is a person who initially throws the life raft to the new family next door, helping them navigate the rough waters of a different kind of suburbia. This neighbour then reels in the family and nurtures them on their metaphorical ship. After the family have acclimatised to life in this part of the ocean (or this part of the city), the good neighbours send them on their way. We experienced this instantly. On day one of moving in, Carol Dale from next door weaved her way through bulky furniture movers, many boxes and a piano to give us some fresh baked cookies. These cookies were like polar bears–they broke the ice. Later that week she invited us around to dinner and made a real effort to get to know us. Over the following weeks she introduced us to various parents of kids who went to my brother’s school, and friendships began being formed.

This family fulfilled the one key criteria of being a good neighbour: making us feel welcome. Because of it, we quickly became happy and truly settled in to life in Northland, Wellington. I think that point (feeling welcome) is a key factor in experiencing acceptance regardless of the neighbour’s race, age or gender.

However, some further steps must be taken to ensure neighbours of different cultures feel welcome in their new community. A key one is understanding. The people living on either side must try to understand their new neighbour’s culture. That doesn’t mean knowing their country’s entire history but it does help to refer to the new family as Japanese instead of Chinese; as Maori instead of Samoan. Because when the roles change; when one of us is seen as the neighbour of a different culture, how would we like to be called Australians? It would make us feel that we make no difference to our new neighbour. It would make us feel that our new neighbour didn’t even care to try and understand our culture. Understanding is a further step one can take to being a good neighbour to someone of a different culture.

On the other side of the scale, the book “40 Ways to Raise a Non–Racist Child” (by Barbara Mathias) raises an interesting point. It says that while it is good to foster good relations with people from all races and cultures, we shouldn’t do it as a project or as an activity to prove to ourselves how liberal and PC we are. There is a difference between being nice to the new Chinese family because they seem like nice people and being nice to them just because they are Chinese. The former is being a good neighbour. The latter is being patronising. One should choose to get along with their new neighbour because they like them as people, not because they want another brownie point for when they’re at the pearly gates.

A good relationship with a neighbour is like a good relationship with a colleague at work. If you don’t have one, then you become permanently prepared for confrontation. If you’re impassive, then you will watch them move away and be just as much of a stranger to them as you were when you first met. But if you get on well, both your professional and personal lives will flourish. You’ll have someone to go and borrow a bike pump from. You’ll have someone to talk to when the dreaded in-laws are coming and you haven’t got enough pillows. But most importantly you’ll have someone to trust.

Next time you hear one of your friends darkly muttering about the new people who’ve moved in down the street, stop them in their tracks. Persuade them to understand and welcome their new neighbour and. Tell them about the time your son had international week at school, and the closest he’d ever been to going overseas was a week in Nelson, and how your neighbour from China kindly told him some Chinese myths and legends for him to share with his class.

If you ever hear your kids or siblings taunting a classmate because they look different, don’t tell them that we are all the same underneath – we’re not. Instead tell them that everyone being so different is why the world is such an interesting place. Remember – we don’t watch movies in black and white anymore; we watch them in full colour. Similarly, our society has changed from being strictly divisive to being brighter, more vibrant, a better place. The path to racial prejudice being eliminated is long and we are only a few paces along it. But seemingly small things like being welcoming to your new neighbour can make a world of difference not just to them, but to you as well. Good neighbours come from all races and cultures. How do we know this? Look around you. We are all living proof.
posted by luveiviti@myvuw as member of the NZ Diversity Program.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Trinidad & Tobaggo Express News: 'No Fiji in T &T' as blogged by Fiji Truth Commission Movement.

Message to Voreqe Bainimarama & his military led government.
Sir Ronald Sanders,a Consultant & former Carribean Diplomat have articulated precisely what most Voiceless Fiji people in Fiji & Fiji bloggers would have wanted to say in a nutshell.
We thank Sir Sanders, for such a well written article. The Real & Authentic FIJI TRUTH surfaces ultimately. This well written article has just reaffirmed what we had been suspecting all along but were not too sure how the International Community & the Commonwealth would have viewed our stories.
Shame on Voreqe Bainimarama & his military regime as another opportunity for 'Fiji Bites the Dust'. Hopes of being heard at the CMAG is history for Fiji.
It will be now left to the people to link in with the Commonwealth Society to air their thoughts, views & aspirations for returning Fiji to a Democratically Elected Political Party to run its affairs in lieu of military led government.
Luvei Viti Think Tank Group @ vuw
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Read more:
Trinidad News:’No Fiji in T & T’ Sanders says. [Trinidad & Tobaggo will Host Commowealth Heads in Novemeber, 2009]

August 22, 2009 by Fiji Truth

Author: Sir Ronald Sanders,

Trinidad & Tobaggo Express, Thursday, August 20th 2009
When the Commonwealth leaders meet in Trinidad in November, they might have expected to welcome back to their councils a government of Fiji that had been elected in March. As it turns out, there will be no Fiji in Trinidad.

If a contest was held to choose a country with a culture of coup d’états, the Pacific island state would be a front-runner. There were two coups in 1987, a third in 2000 and a fourth in December 2006.
Now, come September 1, the 53-nation Commonwealth is expected to suspend Fiji from its membership.

The suspension will come after almost three years of trying every diplomatic and negotiating device to convince the military government of Commodore Frank Bainimarama to restore the country to democratic rule.

A consistent figure in the last two coups, Bainimarama has shown a remarkable failure to honour commitments he gives to the international community.
Fiji is made up of a group of islands in the Pacific and has a population of 872,000 people consisting of indigenous Fijians, indigenous Rotumans and Banabans, Indo-Fijians, Chinese, Europeans (mostly Australians and New Zealanders) and people of mixed race.

The 1987 coup and the abrogation of the 1970 Constitution led to a new Constitution in 1997 which, containing a social compact among all the political parties, provided for affirmative action for indigenous Fijians, gave indigenous Fijians the majority of communal seats in the elected House of Assembly and a near two-thirds majority in the appointed Senate. It also provided for shared governance and settled tensions between the indigenous Fijians and the Indo-Fijians.

Bainimarama’s 2006 coup had nothing to do with racial differences in Fiji and much more to do with controversies between him and the then prime minister, Laisinea Qarase, who was threatening to arrest Bainimarama and others for their part in the coup of 2000.

The Commonwealth has patiently engaged Fiji since the 2006 coup. The previous and current Commonwealth secretaries general, Don McKinnon and Kamalesh Sharma, as well as the organisation’s watchdog body-the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG)-have engaged the military regime and other groups in Fiji to try to restore democracy.

While the Commonwealth did suspend Fiji from the councils of the Commonwealth after the 2006 coup, it did not suspend it from membership of the grouping.

Along with the Pacific Islands Forum (Fiji and its closest neighbours), the United Nations and other bodies, the Commonwealth had been working to persuade Bainimarama to hold elections by March this year – an undertaking that he had given. But March came and went, and in April the government abrogated the Constitution, further entrenched authoritarian rule, cracked down on freedom of speech and assembly, and undermined the judiciary and legal system.

Bainimarama also scrapped the paramount Fijian institution, the prestigious Great Council of Chiefs which selects the president and vice-president. It is widely believed that he did so because the chiefs did not rally to him. He also prevented the dominant Methodist Church from holding its annual convention demanding that it must first be cleansed of political clergymen.

Making matters worse, Bainimarama issued a “Strategic Framework for Change” which he described as “the only path to ensuring sustainable and true democracy, the removal of communal representation and the implementation of equal suffrage based on common and equal citizenry”. Under this plan, work will begin on a new Constitution in 2011 and elections would not he held until 2014.

CMAG, which had shown considerable patience with the Fijian regime up to that point, finally decided enough was enough. Among its nine members is the foreign minister of St Lucia, Rufus Bousquet. Together, the ministers, meeting on July 31, gave the Fijian regime until September 1 to “reactivate the [resident’s Political Dialogue Forum process, facilitated by the Commonwealth and the United Nations”.

The group said it wanted the regime to “state its firm commitment” to reactivating the political dialogue “in writing” to the Commonwealth secretary general by September 1 or “Fiji will be fully suspended on that date”.

No one is holding their breath that such a written commitment will be forthcoming from Bainimarama.

His government has already condemned Fiji’s neighbours in the Pacific Islands Forum for expressing, in early August, “their deep concern for the people of Fiji in the face of Fiji’s deteriorating economy as a consequence of the military regime’s actions, including the undermining of the private sector and the negative effect on business confidence in the absence of the rule of law”.

Suspension of Fiji after almost three years of trying to reason with the military regime is necessary punishment now; but engagement is also necessary to give back to all the people of Fiji their right to democracy, constitutionality and the rule of law.

Sir Ronald Sanders is a consultant and former Caribbean diplomat.

Previous commentaries can be read at: www.sirronaldsanders.com -Courtesy Jamaica Observer

http://www.trinidadexpress.com/index.pl/article_opinion?id=161520139
re-blogged @ http://luveiviti.wordpress.com/



Friday, August 21, 2009

Even the 'International Law Prof Blog' have noted Fiji's troubled Nation by military juntas.

Fiji to Recruit Judges from Sri Lanka
Fiji is a nation troubled by a military who fired all of the judges in the country and suspended the Fijian constitution as an "emergency" measure after a court ruled that the military government there was illegal. Since then there have been severe crackdowns on lawyers, the press, and even on internet usage.
A new press report is stating that Fiji will now look to Sri Lanka to supply it with some judges, at least on a temporary basis. Click here to read more.
(mew)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

The Price we pay for Being a Fiji Person: Is Fiji's Voice & Participation Important in this Pacific Village Online by Prof. PakYoong

Whilst it is a noble thought for Prof.Pak Yoong to have conducted & set up under New Zealand Aid a platform for ongoing dialogue for Pacific Nations, Fiji may very well be left out again. Is it a worry? Well, we think it is, as Fiji's voices and its ability to progress on a common ground with neighboring nations is vital.

Doors of opportunities opens & closes within the Pacific Rim and internationally where Fiji could very well benefit from. Developing Nations are progressing while Fiji explores their options of either stagnating or looking offshores to bigger players that have no vested interest in the basic Cultural & Human Rights Development of Fiji & its people.
Fiji, like a kid that has thrown most of his toys out of his cot, suffers the concequences of bad behaviour. Fiji remains the outsider within the 'Pacific Hood' all because of mischiefs created by Bainimarama and his current regime. Are the current Fiji Military regime so proud, that those within the ruling circle cannot come down their 'high horse'? Or is it so ingrained in corruptive activities that they are still trying to stitch up the loose ends in the event they are all hauled in to Nukulau island where George Speight is doing his time for the crimes he committed.

When I read Prof. Pak's announcement for this seminar, I felt sad for Fiji. As a Fijian-Kiwi, we are aware of some public dialogues, forums and/or opportunities that are blocked from us, simply because we are from Fiji. The minute you state the 'word', Fiji, it resonates negativity, infectious or virus-like effect, militarism, suspicion, Bainimarama-ism, rabuka-ism, coup-de tats etc.

Should we then alter our Community name Luvei Viti 'Children of Fiji' to 'Children of Kiwi-Fiji', maybe not, as we would like to keep our name as is. Bainimarama's current Military regime must change, not the people as he [FB]and his followers have committed Fiji & the people to a life of uncertainity and must be held accountable for their actions or inactions. Repercussions of their actions & mischiefs are causing grief to many Fiji people both in Fiji and living abroad.
A concerned Fijian @ Victoria University.
Luvei Viti Think Tank Group [luveiviti@myvuw]
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Read on:

Facilitating regional co-operation in the Pacific: The emerging role of online communities of practice

Published 17 August 2009

One of Victoria University's finest teachers will reveal how he is bringing Pacific Island communities together through the internet in his inaugural professorial lecture tomorrow night.

Professor Pak Yoong has developed an international reputation as a scholar in the field of technology-enabled collaboration and knowledge management, and more generally the human side of information systems.

Tomorrow night he will present a work in progress report on one of his most recent endeavours—a multi-year action research project called the Pacific Village Online, which he is conducting in collaboration with the Commonwealth Secretariat and NZ Aid.

"Once a year, the heads of the public sector in the Pacific meet to identify regional issues and develop an action plan. The problem has been how to translate this plan into actions that can be implemented," he says.

With his expertise in Information Communication Technology (ICT), Professor Yoong is helping Pacific leaders do that. He will explain how an online community of Pacific human resource managers has evolved to take on this critical translation role.
"For a long time they would simply issue a communiqué at the end of the conference about key areas to work on, but there was no visible follow up. The cost of travel between Pacific islands was a big obstacle to more effective regional cooperation."
For the last two years Professor Yoong has been tackling the issue through annual conferences in Canberra where Pacific human resource managers are gaining expertise in ICT to facilitate Pacific cooperation within an online community of practice.

"One of the key ways to follow-up plans in the Pacific is through the use of ICT—they become an online community of practice through the use of email, teleconferencing and via the Pacific Village Online website," he says.
The website, which Professor Yoong helped develop, also provides Pacific public servants with an online forum, and an invaluable repository of material for knowledge sharing.

"This is a practical example of regional cooperation in the Pacific. I’m hoping it will provide another dimension of how regional cooperation can be enacted through the use of ICT."

Professor Yoong is currently working with the Commonwealth Secretariat to possibly extend the results to Africa, in the form of an Africa Village Online community as well.

Victoria University Vice-Chancellor Professor Pat Walsh says Professor Yoong has a reputation as one of the finest teachers in the School of Information Management, having previously won three Victoria teaching awards.

"He has also played a critical role in the School's development, first as founding Director of its Honours programme, and more recently as the Director of the Research Degrees programme and Chair of the Research Degrees committee within the School. Under his leadership the School has enjoyed considerable success both in attracting excellent PhD students and in improving the management of the programme itself."

Professor Walsh says Victoria's Inaugural Lecture series is an opportunity for new professors to provide family, friends, colleagues and the wider community with an insight into their specialist area of study.

"It is also an opportunity for the University to celebrate and acknowledge our valued professors."

The public lecture is at 6pm in the Hunter Council Chamber, Level 2, Hunter Building, Gate 1 or 2, Kelburn Parade, Wellington on Tuesday 18 August. To RSVP, email rsvp@vuw.ac.nz with 'Yoong' in the subject line.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Restoring of Fiji's Democracy - Is it a 'Pipe Dream' or as Commonwealth Secretariat states it is Vital.

Fiji Truth Commission Movement noted in their blog what the Commonwealth Secretariat views Democracy. [Click the link or header to view].

Read further below;

Democracy and Consensus Building
Objective

Our objective is to build stronger democratic institutions and processes across the Commonwealth. Democratic processes include, but are not limited to, the regular holding of elections and key democratic institutions include election management bodies and parliaments. We aim to achieve this objective by providing training and technical assistance and as well as sending teams of observers to countries’ elections following an invitation.


Relevance

We place a high value on advocating the Commonwealth’s fundamental values (click here for more on these values) as well as on practical action, through the promotion of and support for democracy in member countries to make them a reality on the ground. The basis of our engagement on the protection and promotion of democracy is to ensure that it is based on substance, not merely the adoption of democratic forms or a facade democracy. The practices and procedures which we promote help build enduring democratic institutions, which themselves provide full participation and representation for all citizens.

Impact

Our work has a positive impact by increasing confidence in and boosting the integrity of elections as well as democratic institutions and processes in order to restore any lost trust in the political process.

http://www.thecommonwealth.org/subhomepage/190591/

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Can you Imagine Fiji's Prison in a couple of years from now.


Have you visited any relatives or friends in prison lately? Can you imagine when it will be Bainimarama's turn, I would like to be the Prison Officer at that time.

Students visit Suva prison14 August, 2009The Dudley Interrmediate School students inside the Suva Prison.A historic tour of the Suva Prison for Dudley Intermediate School Year Seven students, have taught them a lesson on the consequence of life’s choices.

The students who toured the Suva Prison had the opportunity to visit the old prison buildings, the cells of the condemned inmates and the execution chamber.During the educational tour of the prison facilities the student were informed about the history of the facility.

The students also visited the renovated prison cells to see for themselves what accommodation is like in the prison facilities.During the tour the students were given a brief on the Fiji Prisons and Correctional Service’s Yellow Ribbon Project by programme coordinator Principal Prison Officer Isireli Dausiga.

The teacher accompanying the students Mrs Vakalalabure said that theme for her student’s tour was “Choice of today determines your tomorrow”.“This visit was an opportunity for the students to understand the reality of life.“Children have to be informed of the consequences of life,” Mrs Vakalalabure said. http://www.corrections.org.fj/

Thursday, August 13, 2009

FIJI HARD-TALK- Read RealFiji's news Thought Provoking Coverage.

J. V. Bainimarama’s Exit Strategy to Restore Democracy in Fiji

There has been serious debate within Franks il(legal) hierarchy to comply with the Commonwealth timeframe to have elections sooner rather than later.

The following is a summary of what they were going to do anyway in 2014 so the only question being pondered now is whether they should move the date to an earlier one after playing mind games with the International Community again.

Please note that this is the end result not the interim musical chairs to be played prior to 2014.

They will Enact a New Constitution, a basic cut and paste job, in a pocket size version with a green cover, encapsulating the following key changes:

a. Powers of the Prime Minister, Cabinet, Parliament and Senate including legislative powers to enact legislation, subsidiary legislation, regulations, rules and policy on same subject to VETO by the President, which decision shall be final and conclusive and shall not be subject to Judicial challenge whatsoever.

b. Prime Minister, Cabinet, Parliament and Senate relieved of any authority over the new Fiji Defence Forces, which includes the Military, Navy, Police and Prisons, which report directly to the Office of the President who is solely responsible for matters pertaining to National Security.

c. Social Justice and Affirmative Action provisions wholly removed (s.44)

d. Bose Levu Vakaturanga provisions wholly removed (s.116)

e. President is Chairman of NLTB and FAB and has VETO power over Trustees and Board.

f. Group Rights provisions wholly removed (s.185-186)

g. Exercise of Emergency powers prerogative of President in his sole absolute discretion (s.187)

h. Writ of Elections issued under revised electoral decree based on universal equal suffrage.

i. Immunity from Prosecution provisions entrenched in new pocket sized Constitution and executed under amended Presidents Prerogative of Mercy (s.115).

j. Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama sworn in as President of the Democratic Republic of Fiji.

k. New Parliament sworn in after ‘free and fair’ elections supervised by the United Nations and Commonwealth, all parliamentarians take their seats in Veiuto after swearing in ceremony.

l. Above in compliance with the Commonwealth of Nations poorly drafted ultimatum, i.e. have election by 2010, with “material omission” on RESTORATION IN FULL OF THE 1997 CONSTITUTION.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Challenging Fiji Regime & Bainimarama 's Leadership. Must Read: Veteran Blogger Mr Suliasi Daunitutu's take on subject.

Ni sa bula,
Just before we take you to read Mr Daunitutu's excellent posting which we felt had to be re -posted as an article on its own due to the intensity of his observations.

As he had said, he was able to attend the training conducted by Mr Michael Green of Australian National University, Australia hence his first hand insight on the subject which will indeed interest many people & experts who are following the Fiji saga.

Just recapping on the Big Conversation or 'Commonwealth Conversation' which we really are encouraging you all to link up to so your Voice will be Heard.

Heres an except of update from the Conversation Team quoted below;

"My reasons for trying to get Fijian bloggers involved are three-fold.

1) we want as many people from as many different Commonwealth countries engaged in the website discussions and influencing the report as possible. One of my ideas is to have a Commonwealth blog network – a directory of blogs from across the Commonwealth with similar purposes and ideals.

2) With Fiji such a big issue for the Commonwealth at the moment I think it’s really important that the voices of ordinary Fijians and people who care about Fiji are heard and impact upon the proposals we present. Commonwealth policy towards countries like Fiji is often dictated by politicians. I want to know what people like you think the Commonwealth should be doing about the situation in Fiji.

3) If you, or other bloggers were interested – I would like to host some opinion articles from Fijian bloggers on the website describing their experiences and saying what they think the Commonwealth should do to help them.

Thank you so much for putting up a link to us on your blog! When we have a bit of time, probably early next week, we will start compiling a list of Commonwealth bloggers on the website. Best,..."unquote.
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Bloggers,
We have alot of assumptions when it comes to challenging the Regime and Voreqe's leadeeship, and they can all be logical to an extent.

I was at Michael Green's seminar at the Australian National University today, and he spoke on a paper he wrote about how the Qarase multicabinet government was not given a chance to run
He reiterated alot of the things that got him into trouble and eventually his deportation from Fiji.
This government he said, was doing quite well and didn't have time to build a reputation before Voreqe came up with all his rhetorics which in turn has brought us to where we are today. Mr Green informed us that Mr. Qarase was just in the process of getting people to NZ to learn more about the concept when it all came to an abrupt halt.

Since then, he (Voreqe) has been censoring the media, violated basic human rights as encapsulated by article 19 of the Universal Declaration of HR,abrogated the Constitution and made friends with ex communists and a country well known for it's abhorrent cast system.
That brings me to this issue of us isolating ourselves or the International communities closing their doors. Call it what you like, but that is the reality, our friends are disassociating themselves from us. Australi and New Zealand, the PIF, the EU and now the Commonwealth.

This might be followed by more and it will be nothing but fatal for the economy and the people will suffer. If it is a short term sacrifice for long term benefit than there is no other way but suspend Fiji.
Voreqe is not going to be dictated to as he has proven in his leadership, so there would be no point in pussyfooting around with important decisions such as this. If the CMAG want dialogue, then he will be trying to get things done to his terms instead of reaching a solution bipartite. He has proven to the world that he has very little room for compromise.
It is hard to see our country suffering, but if hard decisions have to made for the benefit of later generations, then they should be made.
If we succumb to him as the GCC,Methodist Church and the polulation have done, then his arrogance will be fuelled by this action, or lack of it giving him the false impression that he is invincible.
Remember, he said, he came to clean up, now he is trying to solve problems that were not there to start with.
Suliasi Daunitutu.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Commonwealth Conversation - Its Big & Join up for your Voice to be Heard. Check out Fiji Polls while there.




The Largest dialogue ever for people in the Commonwealth & Association ...
Two billion people. 53 countries. One Conversation. Join In.[says the experts].

What do you think?
Should Fiji be suspended from the Commonwealth?
Yes (61%, 17 Votes)
No (39%, 11 Votes)
Total Voters: 28
Loading ...
Polls Archive

If still unconvinced heres an Excerpts of letter from the Commonwealth Conversation Team:

Dear Children of Fiji,


I am writing from the Royal Commonwealth Society, based in London, about a recent project we have launched called The Commonwealth Conversation.

The Conversation is a series of consultations and online discussions about the future of the Commonwealth – and what the Commonwealth is doing both right and wrong.

We will be presenting our findings at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in Trinidad in November.

At the moment I am trying to develop a network of bloggers from around the Commonwealth who might be interested in engaging with our website discussions and influencing the report we present.

As you can well imagine – we are very keen for the situation in Fiji to be a part of these discussions and I was wondering if you would be interested in getting involved.

http://www.thecommonwealthconversation.org/

I have only just begun the process of networking bloggers and I would be very grateful if you passed on this information to those who might also like to get involved.

Very best,

Commonwealth Conversation Team
About the Conversation
---------------------------------------------------------
CMAG doesn’t suspend FijiPosted by ZoeWare - 31/07/09 at 07:07 pm

Considerable rumours circulated worldwide this week about the imminence of Fiji’s full suspension from the Commonwealth at the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group (CMAG) held today, Friday 31st July, in London. However at the meeting, CMAG’s 9 Foreign Ministers agreed to give the Fijian regime 1 more month to reactivate the President’s Political Dialogue Forum process, facilitated by the Commonwealth and the United Nations.
CMAG stressed that such a Dialogue must be independent, inclusive, time-bound and without any pre-determined outcome, and lead to credible elections in the country no later than October 2010. If these conditions are not met by 1st September 2009, Fiji will be fully suspended from the Commonwealth.


Above Photo taken during Queen Elizabeth 2nd visit to Fiji in the hey days.

FULL TEXT OF 31 JULY 2009 CMAG STATEMENT
The CMAG is the Commonwealth’s mechanism to deal with serious or persistent violations of the Commonwealth’s fundamental political values laid down in the Harare Declaration.

Fiji was suspended from the councils of the Commonwealth in December 2006, following the military overthrow of the Pacific Island state’s democratically elected government. Fiji remains in contravention of the Commonwealth’s fundamental political values of democracy, human rights and the rule of law. See here for an example.

Do you think the Commonwealth should have acted more decisively today to suspend Fiji from the Commonwealth? Or do you think Commonwealth Foreign Ministers are right to try to affect change in Fiji by keeping her, at least partially, within the fold?

Some Responses to “CMAG doesn’t suspend Fiji”
  • ZoeWare says: July 31st, 2009 at 8:03 pm
    Fijian officials obviously aren’t that bothered about suspension from the Commonwealth, as they sought to downplay its importance earlier this week while suspension seemed likely http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=126484

  • AlexT says: August 1st, 2009 at 3:11 pm
    The entire thing is a joke. This is the biggest open and shut case! It should have taken 10 minutes to draft a statement and kick them out.

  • RFLowings says: August 3rd, 2009 at 2:10 pm
    Of course Commonwealth leaders should keep Fiji within the fold. The Commonwealth does not exist as an international judiciary, and trying to encourage change is the best thing that can be done in this situation.
    The Commonwealth’s existing mandate is against ‘world policemen’.
    If we want a fundamental change in the Commonwealth’s guiding principles, then we must lobby for that.
    Do you want to close off the Commonwealth?

  • ZoeWare says: August 5th, 2009 at 9:31 am
    Has the Fijian government changed its tune? The Fiji Times reports that in response to the CMAG statement, the government are now inviting a Commonwealth delegation to Fiji for discussions. http://www.fijitimes.com/story.aspx?id=126800

  • RFLowings says: August 5th, 2009 at 10:17 am
    QED. This is a perfect example of Commonwealth application of Diplomatic pressure. If there can be free & fair elections by 2010 then there’s clear evidence that CMAG is still relevant.
    Just because the Commonwealth doesn’t swoop right in there with the ban hammer doesn’t mean they’re ineffective. We shall see what comes of this.
    Jolly good show, Commonwealth!

Monday, August 3, 2009

People Power v Power of guns & military in Fiji.

It is fair to quote from Job 15:20-35.
Verse 20 : "A wicked man who oppresses others will be in torment as long as he lives.

The blogosphere has been inundated with great thoughts and ideas and experiences of what the ideal Fiji should be. One just needs to sit back and read different views of bloggers in the 'Virtual World' articulating some very challenging & hard core facts of what had transpired or is occuring in Fiji after 2006 coup. Some blogs are indeed well thought out & some not, both staking their claims as to their take on Fiji saga.
The bottom line, Fiji people are Victims of this ongoing unrest and uncertainty created by Bainimarama's military regime. Much debate & dialogue in blogosphere resulting in some low level mud slinging exercise where trivialiaties surfaces.

At the very least, People of Fiji can say, although the Rule of Gagging & Rule of Guns have forbidden the People from talking freely about what matters to them & not having the ability to express their Rights of Choice at the ballot box, Fiji Bloggers are:
'Fighting the Fiji People's Fight against Military Dictatorship led by Bainimarama
& his regime. '

Hope for Fiji People & Future generation exists in several forms. After two decades of onslaught of coup-de-tats & tyranny, it is vital that we give;

'Freedom to the Fiji people by voicing & staging their protests via our blogs to the world. This is the finest battle, the Battle of Words'.

To cite a famous line from a historical leader,
"It is a victory of right; it is a victory of justice; it is a victory for morality."

Fiji's reality; there has been several coups led by group of army officers who as a result have sold out Fiji nation's interests, housed dictatorships that made the most onerous concessions to selected foreigners that are willing to align with their wishes. The people have been betrayed. Media censored to the core.
Stories emnating of corruptive activities within the inner circle, Bainimarama included, a case example as pointed out by Intelligensiya's blog:" Breaking: What Bainimarama is stealing from our mouths " Others in his clique club driving around in pajeros & expensive vehicles while some ordinary men, women & their families in Fiji are loosing their homes to auctions because they cannot keep up with their mortgage payments due forced retirement [55years] or joblessness.

An expert once said, 'Where there is justice there is no crime, and where there is crime there is no freedom of the press. Where there is crime, people hide their actions."

As a point of interest, we did a random count on whos saying what on the veteran Fiji favourite bloggers & not so favourite. It is evident, those opposing Bainimarama & his military style governance or autocratic and/or totalitarian are way ahead of the race on this one.

Well done bloggers for keeping those keen to know the latest news & views from Fiji after all the current regime has intentionally gagged media outlets both local & overseas, in the event they expose the unethical behavious being adopted by Bainimarama & his men.

Interestingly, it is becoming clear that the big players of the West or the Super Powers, are of the same view that Fiji must be returned to Democracy as early as 2010. This will be a far cry from Frank Bainimaram's dreams. For one, it will mean Loss of Power from him and his regime, Loss of Control on the People of Fiji, Loss of Control on the Ailing Economy of Fiji, Loss of Perks & the Ego (s) that comes with it and the list goes on.

Some say, Fiji saga is a war on race, its a war on religion or beliefs, or a war of 'haves & have nots' as recently noted in some bloggers who are citing they are the hardworking race that have earned themselves big money, big houses, big cars etc etc.

Our take on this is certainly from a different angle, we want Freedom for the People of Fiji, Freedom from Oppression, Freedom of Press, Freedom of Speech, Freedom to Vote for a Political Party to Run the Affairs of Fiji etc etc etc.

Last but not least, we will support the Vote for a Fiji Truth Commission to be established.

Bula, No'oia, Kia Ora, Warm Greetings, Namaste

Children of Fiji & Friends of Fiji

Children of Fiji & Friends of Fiji
Down memory lane

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