Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Best Answer to What Fijians are Thinking About The Fiji Military Now!! Is this the Aftermath of Fijian soldiers Serving with United Nations Peace Keeping?

 For Fiji ' s Children Permalink Reply by For Fiji ' s Children on May 7, 2010 at 10:14am

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Our Wish for Fr Christmas: "It is Time to set our Country Free!!"

From: FDFM Secretariat ;

If we allow the Commodore Bainimarama to illegally rule Fiji till 2014, the University of the South Pacific's Dr Wadan Narsey has calculated that the military would have busted its annual budget to the tune of $700,000,000 if it is allowed to continue as planned till 2014.

That is $700 Million for unproductive periodically coup conducting soldiers. Which Means $700 million less for education, health, social welfare, poverty alleviation, and national infrastructure development – not to mention the enormous damage done to the national economy.

For those of you who can, come let us all much together in Suva on Friday........ of December. Remember the Regime do not have the resources to arrest and detail 10 or 20 thousand people. Please forward email on to people you know in Fiji or beater still, print 10 copies and distribute to the man on the street in Fiji.


Fiji Democracy and Freedom Movement

ABN 5614 4956 413

On lighter Note!!! " Watch Out Wellingtonians!!

To: Rugby Rugby Rugby "Fiji Sevens"

Bad luck for Fiji
Paula TagivetauaWednesday, December 22, 2010
Seremaia Burotu runs away for another try at the Dubai Sevens. LOOKING back at the first leg of the IRB World Sevens Series, I can only conclude that it was bad joss, as the Chinese would say - bad luck, for Fiji.

After Dubai, I said to myself that Fiji had equal chance of winning but there were those errors committed at critical moments that took victory away. One wonders if Fiji had put away England in their pool game. The Poms scored at the death to beat Fiji and qualify for the cup quarter-finals and went on to beat Samoa in the final.

Their path was one of narrow escapes but they had the experience and the pace to match - one thing England had more than any team in the IRB series in Dubai and George. The pace in their backs saved them and that is what Fiji lacks - pace in the backs. No offence to Bole and the other Fiji backs but when it comes to sevens, you need explosive speed off the mark to catch the opposition off guard.

In sevens the element of surprise is vital. It is the main weapon in the game the gods play in heaven. In the game against New Zealand, Fiji had the measure of Tich's men until Nuku went in to tackle the young Kiwi player and got a knee on the head which concussed him and opened the way for New Zealand to score.

It was the turning point, as far as I was concerned. If only Nuku had hit the Kiwi in the abdomen, it would have been a stop-tackled but he went low and caught a knee and - blackout. Then one of the forwards lost the ball in a tackle, the Kiwis gathered and countered to scored the winning try at the death. They were tied 19-all that time and all they shoud have done was slow down play until the hooter and force extra time which would have been anybody's game.

It would have been the wisest thing to do. I wondered if the skipper or the coach had relayed the order to vakamatea na qito to force extra time but it seems there was no order given and the team kept on being adventurous. That is where experience comes in.
In George when the All Blacks were one man down against England, were awarded a penalty and they showed Tich indicating from the side to kick at goal.
Cama took the drop goal and New Zealand won the cup.

That is the leadership missing from the Fiji team. It has been missing since the maestro took his exit and that kind of leadership on the field in those crucial moments that only comes to those who have vision and can read the game better than any other player. As for the lack of pace, I am still looking for people with speed to burn. The last fast man I saw in the Fiji team was Bolavucu. Since then, there has been no pace man to explode from midfield or slice through a half gap and no one would touch him.

The reason, as I see it is that the bulk of the players in the Fiji team are mostly 15s players.

You know, the selectors can argue that they are fit but there is a difference between sevens and the 15s game. People who say there is hardly or no difference do not know or haven't played sevens well to know that you have sevens players and 15s players and sevens players play sevens better than 15s players as most 15s players will play at 15s than in sevens.
Only the exceptional players can play equally well in 15s and sevens - players in the mould of Noa Nadruku and Tabulutu.

Fiji sevens teams of the past were known for their explosive and speedy back, especially the wingers. We have had Vunibaka, Delasau, Bari and Bolavucu but sadly, we have lost the plot.
Why - because we have not been playing more sevens.

When the IRB series was introduced a decade ago, the Fiji sevens calendar remained the same - from November to March.By March, the IRB series would have been at halfway with four tournaments to go and the Fiji sevens calendar would be nearing completion and the cream of sevens players would be at their peak.

But they would be too late because the Fiji sevens team had been picked from players who stood out in the domestic 15s competition and some opf those who were members of the squad last year. We are not doing things right.

The sevens selectors have not done the right thing - to pick players who have sevens acumen.
We just have to look at Tich - how he keeps churning out young players who have stamped their mark on the sevens code on their way to the 15s arena and stardom.

He has a knack of picking players who are good in sevens and he just builds on the natural talent and flair the player possesses. It does not mean that Tich is better than the Fijian coaches and selectors. We have it with us but for a moment back then, we seemed to have lost the plot, like I said. All it takes is a deep soul searching.

We should identify the good sevens players and pick them.It is not use thinking of sevens as just another game of rugby and no diftferent from 15s. I tell you, they are totally different.
Fiji's result in the IRB series tells a lot. We have been there but not right there.
Something is missing. We just need to put the pieces together and we will be back on the winner's podium.

I wish the Fiji team well for Wellington in February and the remaining IRB legs.
We can do it.

Source : Fiji Times

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

More 'BLUFF' from Fiji's ?Perhaps Ailing Komada!!

Theres something sinister about this 'BLUFF' that Komada Frank Bainimarama, Fiji's coup master. Now he is picking holes with the United States of America. What for we ask? Just a few days ago he echoes his wish about moving the United Nations HQ to China.

Over the weekend past, media and bloggers widely reported how Komada FB is blaming the Aussies, Kiwis & the Americans for the problems being encountered in Fiji. Now he points his 'crooked fingers' at the USA. What next?
Whispers has it as noted in Coup 4.5 blog that Komada Bainimarama has been again whisked to none other but China-dom for perhaps more much needed medicare??
Read more;

Question mark over dictator’s health via Fiji Democracy Now Blog by Fiji Democracy Now on 12/12/10

Fiji freedom blogger Coup Four And A Half has heard from two different sources that the dictator has headed back to China for further medical treatment. No doubt, the exact truth will emerge at some point. But in the meantime we at FDN share Coup Four And A Half’s belief that the dictator has a major health issue. For a start, there were the strange goings on during his first trip to China, capped by a couple of fuzzy photos in which the dictator’s hands were obscured and there was an obvious attempt to hide something on the right side of his neck. Second, a close study of the very few photographs of the dictator since his return from China show a man who has something wrong with him. We will continue to watch this space very, very closely.

Coup Four And A Half 12 December 2010:
Has Bainimarama headed back to China for more treatment?

The lies are exposed By Fiji Democracy Now

It’s clear the dictator is trying to pick a fight with the United States Government. First, the regime’s obliging propaganda mouthpiece, the Fiji Sun reports that US Ambassador Steven McGann was called in to the Foreign Affairs ministry “amid a widening rift between the US Embassy and our government.” Then the dictator weighs in by saying that the United States is following “the bullying tactics” of the Australian and New Zealand Government’s. What next? Will McGann be subjected to anonymous death threats the way the deported Australian Ambassador Jim Batley was? Or will the dictator just cut to the chase and tell McGann he’s no longer welcome in Fiji?

Fiji Sun 12 December 2010: US envoy called in
US Ambassador to brief PM of talks
Shalveen Chand

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

UNITED States Ambassador Steve McGann will, upon his return from Washington, personally brief Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama on the outcome of his discussions on Fiji.

In a statement, the US Embassy said yesterday Ambassador McGann departed on December 5 for previously scheduled annual leave and consultations in the US.

"While in Washington, Ambassador McGann will hold discussions with US officials on issues of continuing concern between our two nations in the context of our policy of increased engagement with Fiji and in appreciation of Fiji's support in international forums," said the statement.

"Ambassador McGann looks forward to personally briefing Prime Minister Bainimarama on the outcome of his consultations in Washington upon his return to Fiji."

Mr McGann's December 5 departure contradicts a news report that he was summoned to the Fiji Foreign Affairs office last week. The impasse became news when, on December 6, Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum conducted a press conference to announce the Government's disappointment with the US Embassy for not providing Chief Justice Anthony Gates with a visa to attend a convention in New York. Last Thursday a government statement said Local Government Minister Colonel Samuela Saumatua was not given a transit visa in time to travel to the COP16 meeting in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Source: Fiji Times

Friday, December 3, 2010

Who will Fork Out $1746 millions to Fund Bainimarama's Plan for 2011 in Fiji?

The 2011 Budget Oscars: burdening future generations

Professor Wadan Narsey

Another year, another illegal Acting Minister of Finance presenting Budget Estimates for 2011 stating "As approved by the Fiji Government".

Without a Parliament, this is now the only reporting exercise to the Fiji taxpayers, who will fork out $1746 millions to fund Bainimarama’s plans for 2011.

As always, the media and taxpayers only think about the little bits taken from them in taxes, and the little bits given here and there in benefits, and strange reversals in economic policies such as protectionism.

They can rarely look at the long-term Big Picture that Annual Budgets add up to (and it does not help that articles like this can never get past the censors in local media).

Unfortunately also, regardless of the alleged principles of accountability preached by the Charter, this Military Government will not release the Auditor General’s Reports on how our tax money was spent in the past, or those Reports explaining why $300 millions more of our tax money will be pumped into propping up the Fiji Sugar Corporation; or the Reports on the hundreds of millions lost at Natadola and Momi due to this Military Government’s actions.
Not that any one from the business community and the accounting and auditing firms would be asking such pesky questions of this Military Government.

Neither would they be asking the Acting Finance Minister (Mr Aiyaz Khaiyum) to explain why his extravagant claims about the macro objectives of the Bainimarama Government, is totally contradicted by the numbers given in his own 2011 Budget Supplement.

If the 2011 Budget Supplement numbers are correct, then the following will be the Record Card for the Bainimarama Government over the last four years.

The Bainimarama Record Card

Judge this Military Government by its own key macro-economic targets, stated clearly in their 2011 Budget Supplement (paragraph 3.3, page 18):

* Raising investment levels to 25 percent of GDP. (FAIL)
* Growing the economy by 5 percent annually; (FAIL)
* Reducing the rate of poverty to a negligible level; (FAIL)
* Reducing fiscal deficits; (FAIL) (opposite being done)
* Reducing Government debt; (FAIL) (opposite being done)
* Maintaining inflation at around 2-3 percent on average; (FAIL) (inevitably)
* Maintaining foreign exchange reserves at 4-5 months of import cover; (C grade)
Despite having complete control of Fiji for the last four years, the Bainimarama Government has utterly failed to achieve any of their own first six targets. They are not likely to achieve them either over the next four years. For some targets, they are blatantly and dangerously doing the opposite.

[Without the Graphs]
1 Investment as % GDP (2 year moving average).........

Investment as % of GDP
Look at the Graph. Investment had risen briefly to 25% in 1999, but the 2000 coup by soldiers reversed that trend, with another dive taking place after 2006. In 2010 it is almost certainly 15% or less.

All the indicators (building permits approved, savings ratios, etc) indicate that this ratio will not rise given that investor confidence is at an all-time low.

Most people hardly ever see the statistics behind the Graph 2 on the right – National Savings as % of GDP (estimated by the World Bank, but not by Fiji). National Savings is roughly National Income minus Consumption – Net Outflows.

One can see the decline setting in after 1987, then again after 2000. For the first time in the history of Fiji, this ratio became negative over 2007 and 2008, probably because of capital flight by locals, foreigners and potential investors, over fear of impending devaluation. Graph 1 in fact follows the trends shown by Graph 2.

Such capital flights (by foreigners and locals alike) and loss of investor confidence are encouraged by military decrees appropriating assets, military decrees preventing aggrieved persons from taking their cases to court, expulsion of CEOs of large corporations, deportation of newspaper editors, and imposition of draconian media censorship. In such a climate you are unlikely to see investment rise to 25% of GDP.

It is to be expected that that large corporations will try to avoid taxes by whatever means available (including transfer pricing), while waging strong PR campaigns to win public sympathy. But the solution for illegal activities must surely be through legal redress. The solution for more equitable tax payments from a vitally important export company, is Graph 2 Savings % of GDP (2 year moving averages)-surely negotiation in good faith. Not expulsion of CEOs or large, sudden and discriminatory increases in resource taxes.

Negative economic growth
The 2011 Budget documents confirm what most of us have been fearing- that the growth rate for 2010 is going to be (now estimated to be 0.1%) far below the optimistic rates being projected by the Reserve Bank.

Graph 3 shows clearly what has happened since 2006 when Bainimarama took over. The top straight line represents what a modest 2.2% growth would have given us between 2006 and 2010. The black line is what the Bainimarama Government has actually achieved for us: the GDP in 2010 was even lower than in 2006.

The ever-widening gap represents a loss in national income of over $1,250 millions in real 2005 terms (and more in current dollars), with a corresponding loss of potential government revenue and expenditure of more than $300 million.

Having lost the tax-payers these huge amounts, the Bainimarama Government pats itself on the back (with the jovial support of business tycoons) for $10 millions given out for food vouchers and $12 millions for bus fare subsidies.

Let us not talk about the impact on poverty, or Father Kevin Barr’s long-postponed Wages Councils Orders following underhand pressures by employers.

Fiscal Deficits and Public Debt: Lies?
Possibly the biggest and most damaging con-trick that this Military Government is pulling on Fiji’s tax-payers is the continuing claim that it is planning to reduce Fiscal Deficits and the Public Debt.

On the contrary, the numbers in the 2011 Budget Supplement show that fiscal deficits have remained large (ie this Military Government keeps spending more than it receives in revenue). Consequently, the Public Graph 3 GDP (2005 prices) ($m)3500400045005000200020012002200320042005200620072008200920102.20%ActualGraph 3 Total Public Debt (Actual and Planned) ($millions)

Debt has risen from 2006 to 2010 by a massive $515 million.

Worse still, the Budget Supplement numbers clearly show (Table 3.1, page 19) that this Military Government is planning to further increase the public debt between 2010 and 2013 by another $576 million. That is, by 2013, they will have increased the Public Debt by more than a billion dollars (see Graph 3).

This is a billion dollars that this illegal and irresponsible Military Government wants to pass on to the future generation, to pay for their mistakes of today.

We remember that the Qarase Government also expanded the Public Debt between 2000 and 2006 by more than a billion dollars- some on infrastructure, but the rest to cover their Agricultural Scam, the over-generous vote-buying Public Service salary increases just before the 2006 elections, and also the military over-expenditure (more on this below).

But their saving grace was that the economy was still growing. Under Bainimarama, the economy is not growing.

Another worry for many of us is that the Military Government will even further raid the Fiji National Provident Fund, who is their captive banker and milking cow, with the Board and CEO totally under their control. Should the Fiji economy not grow and Government not repay its loans, the FNPF will become further insolvent.

Taxpayers of Fiji: note that for next year, the Budget Supplement states that you will be paying $789 million for Debt Service- this is a half of all Government Revenue.

It is no wonder than Education and Health cannot be given the increases that their Ministries need and deserve (however much their Ministers smile on TV and say they will manage).
Put another way, by 2013, each household in Fiji will effectively be struggling to pay for its $20,000 share of the Public Debt, planned by this Military Government.

So what is the Bainimarama Government’s increase in Public Debt due to?

Monstrous Military Over-expenditure

It is confirmed now that a large chunk of the increase ($300 million) is going to pay for the Fiji Sugar Corporation losses and "mill refit" fiasco by Bainimarama’s appointees.
But the most important increases in Public Debt are due to the continuing massive inflation and illegal over-expenditure of the military budget.

With the convenient excuse of an attempted coup (by its own soldiers), the Fiji Military Forces has been illegally over-spending the budget approved by parliament every year since 2000- in millions: 19m, 8m, 20m, 32m, 14m, 24m, 50m (in 2007), 8m, 28m, and 24m (in 2010).
Roughly, between 2000 and 2010, the Military has illegally over-spent by some $225 million– this is as much as the cost of the National Bank of Fiji disaster. All added to Fiji’s Public Debt, to be paid for by the future generations.

But the real change in military expenditure has been worse than that. Before 2000, the military expenditure was only around $50 million. It was only following the attempted military coup in 2000 that the Qarase Government increased the military’s budget by another ten to twenty million- to contain the problems of the military’s own making. Hah. Qarase never thought those same guns would be turned on him.

So compared to the pre-2000 military budget of around $50 million, the inflation of military spending between 2000 and 2010 has cost the Fiji tax-payers roughly an extra $450 million. All added to the Public Debt.

If the current trend continues till 2014 (and the 2011 Budget indicates that it will), the Military will have taken another extra $250 millions from the tax-payers and added it to the Public Debt. Or some $700 millions over and above their normal pre-2000 allocations, between 2000 and 2014.

Add or subtract a few tens of millions here and there, or allow for price changes, the picture will not change.

This $700 million more for unproductive armed soldiers in uniforms periodically conducting coups, means $700 million less for education, health, social welfare, poverty alleviation, and rural development- not to mention the massive damage done to the economy.

Given this massive ongoing misallocation of tax-payers’ money, who cares about a few million peanuts of tax-payers’ money that this Bainimarama Government is throwing at Food Vouchers and children’s bus fare subsidies in the 2011 Budget?

Who will pay?

Most of the Pubic Debt is being passed on to your children.

But there is also the large increase in VAT from 12.5% to 15%., expected to raise $80 millions. We all know the VAT to be a regressive tax, whose burden falls more heavily on the low and middle income people who usually spend a higher proportion of their incomes.

Which is why even Father Barr, a once avid supporter of the Bainimarama Government is now complaining about the increase in VAT, as he also complains about the failure of the Military Government to implement his Wages Councils.

This illegal Military Government is also planning to sell off public assets like FEA, to try to stop the Fiscal Deficits exploding further.

Just as the SVT Government’s then Minister of Finance Jim Ah Koy disastrously did with the creation and sale of ATH shares in 1998, this Military Government will also thereby convert a public monopoly into a private monopoly, which will rip off even more, the helpless consumers, despite the best efforts of the bumbling Commerce Commission.

The IMF Excuse

How odd that this Military Government chooses to justify their VAT increase and sale of public assets by referring to IMF Mission advice. This Military Government will also use the IMF excuse when they start sacking more public sector employees (in addition to all those over 55 laid off recently).

But the Military Government ignores that they could not fulfill the complete set of IMF requirements for a Standby Arrangement.

We in Fiji should also understand that the experience of the developing world is that the unaccountable, non-transparent, ever-changing IMF missionaries couldn’t give tuppence for the lives of the ordinary people they trifle with.

There is no public indication that the IMF recommended that Fiji’s military expenditure must be significantly reduced to pre-2006 levels if the Fiscal Deficits and Public Debt are to be reduced to sustainable levels; nor that any burden of adjustment should be shared by the upper income brackets as well through the income tax, and not just through a VAT increase which will hurt the poorest more.

The IMF’s key concerns have always been about facilitating and strengthening the private sector, if necessary by privatising and downsizing public corporations. For the amoral IMF missionaries, a dictatorial Military Government provides a grand opportunity to bring about changes not easily possible through elected accountable governments.

We should remember also that an "IMF Mission to Fiji" is a "not to be missed opportunity" for a bloated 8-person team to have a lovely few days in a tropical paradise, away from freezing Washington or far more unpleasant African banana republics which usually receive IMF attention.

Inflation and Cost of Living

This Military Government’s claim that they will contain inflation, is equally hollow. Fiji’s inflation is largely imported, totally beyond the control of the Government or the Commerce Commission.
Indeed, the recent Reserve Bank devaluation of the Fiji dollar boosted inflation beyond the alleged 3% target, while the planned 20% increase in VAT will add even more.
The cost of living for everyone will go up, regardless of the sporadic and generally futile Commerce Commission price controls on a limited number of items (not sold by a certain tycoon).

Father Barr’s poorest workers are certainly not going to get timely Cost of Living adjustments through the Wages Council.

And the FNPF and other savings of the ordinary people will keep going down the drain, continuously eroded by the inflation, while unable to grow because of the continuing economic stagnation and lack of employment creation.

So taxpayers and coup collaborators need to honestly ask themselves: who have really profited from the 2000 and 2006 military coups?

Benefits for the Military

It is ironic that there is such hatred on the blog sites directed against Aiyaz Khaiyum who is strangely accused of implementing some kind of Taliban "Sunset Clause" on the Fijian race, and of manipulating a pliant Bainimarama. This frequently racist blogging took another turn with Khaiyum’s presentation of the budget, on behalf of an absent sick Bainimarama.

Of course, Khaiyum invites such criticism with his egotistical "in-your-face" daily prominence in the media, his obvious enjoyment of power and authority over so many powerful ministries, and the steady stream of salusalus and adulation from the pliant business community (as long as their business interests are served, who cares if the rest of the country goes down the drain?).
But let us face it: Khaiyum (like Parmesh Chand and Jonhn Samy) is merely in the service of Bainimarama and the Fiji Military Council, very smoothly and suavely doing their dirty work. Indeed his performance on TV is a "revelation of sorts" even to those of us who shared a cell with him protesting the Rabuka coups more than twenty years ago.

Of course, Khaiyum and his coup collaborating cobbers from NZ may be enjoying considerable financial benefits themselves, as others have in the past, and gone today.

But, in dollar terms, the biggest ongoing 2000 and 2006 coup beneficiaries of tax-payers funds, have been Bainimarama and his senior military officers, some of the former FMF Commanders, and the military rank and file, who have followed Bainimarama blindly into treason against a lawfully elected Government.

Note that 99 per cent of the bigger FMF beneficiaries are indigenous Fijians, who I suspect are quietly chuckling around their grog-bowl that Khaiyum (and other prominent Indo-Fijians) are egotistically taking the limelight, and the flak from the bloggers.

I suspect that when the tide turns, the Bainimarama camp and the numerous quiet indigenous Fijian coup collaborators, will blame the Indians for "misleading and manipulating Bainimarama and the Military Council"; present a tabua or two; perform a matanigasau or two; and the vanua will come together again, all forgiven.

Who knows where the Indo-Fijian, the Part-European and European coup collaborators will then go to. Someone can ask them.

Epilogue for 2011 Budget Oscars

It is their personal tragedy, that all these officers and soldiers of the Fiji Military Forces, aided by the current and former Army Commanders, have now wrecked their own reputations, professionalism and marketability in the world of peace-keeping and security provision.
But the greater ongoing tragedy for Fiji, so clearly shown by this 2011 Budget, is that this Military Government and the coup collaborators are imposing a massive Public Debt burden that Fiji’s future generations will struggle to pay, undermining their standards of living for more than a decade.

Look at what is happening today to Greece, Ireland and Portugal, where Public Debt ran out of control, aided by the Global Financial Crisis.

Khaiyum may deserve an Oscar for his acting ability in presenting in the 2011 Budget, mouthing the Bainimarama Government’s Roadmap and macro objectives, fully understanding that none of them are being met, or are even likely to be met, while blatantly lying about reducing Fiscal Deficits and the Public Debt.

But supporting Oscars should also go to Fiji’s business community- the tycoons, the partners and principals of the accounting firms, and the numerous collaborating Flotsam and Jetsam from abroad, for merrily playing along and even praising this dangerous 2011 Budget (the images on Fiji One are revealing).

Unfortunately, the economic and social disaster that this Military Government is visiting on Fiji through the 2011 Budget is not in the "make-believe" world of Hollywood Oscars, also seen so often on our TV screens.

Fiji’s young workers and children will learn that harsh message one day, when the Public Debt chickens come home to roost.

Is there anyone in the Fiji Civil Service who can explain all this to the Bainimarama Government before further damage is done?
[Source: Secretariat. Fiji Democracy Freedom Movement]

Thursday, November 25, 2010

New Zealand Mourns the Loss of 29 Miners Trapped in Underbelly of Pike River Valley.

New Zealand is in mourning as we listened to the Hon. Prime Minster, John Key, breaking the sad news on the loss of lives of 29 men at Pike River Mine.

We felt the sorrows as we sat glued to the television listening and noting every word said. It is indeed a sad day for New Zealand.

We like to remember those men who lost their lives and whose bodies are still trapped in the underbelly of Pike River Valley. May you all Rest In Peace.

We also pray for all the families and loved ones who now have to comprehend that their grand-dad, dad, uncle, brother, son, husband, loved one, friend, partner whose face and presence will be no longer felt, and no doubt will forever be etched in every loved ones' heart.

Our humble prayer that during these times of sorrow you will all find solace in your hearts.

Luvei Viti ( Children of Fiji) Community.

Thu, 25 Nov 2010 4:34a.m.

By 3 News staff

Check in throughout the day for up to the minute updates, interviews and photos.

Parliament pays respect to miners
2.44pm - Political leaders have paid tribute to those affected by the Pike River mine explosion this afternoon, before standing and singing Whakaaria Mai.

Explosion could have been prevented at risk to miners' lives

2.15pm - Mr Whittall informed reporters this afternoon that yesterday's explosion could have been prevented if the mine was starved of oxygen. "But we weren't prepared to do that because there was still hope of survivors," he says.

"It's not like the mine was a big scary place waiting to kill them. The miners understood the risks."

Pike CEO rested staff overnight

1.55pm - Pike River CEO Peter Whittall told reporters this afternoon that last night he rested his staff; a minimal number was kept on standby. Everyone was exhausted and needed a break, he said.

Mr Whittall also said the conditions underground had not changed and the level of gas near the bore hole is still the same. Families have been told the bodies will definitely be brought back and they expect to make progress on this in the next few days.

Read more;

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fact of The Matter: Fiji Has Been Under Bainimarama's Dictatorship & No Different from a Communist State Since 2006 Coup. Its Wake Up Fiji!!

Posted by Samuela Tawakilai

Your thoughts please. Let us not close our eyes to what is happening in our beloved country. Are we on the verge of becoming a communist country, or what we are witnessing, just a "cry for help:" from a fugitive who is running away from justice?

Replies to This Discussion

Reply by Waisake Bogirua on November 8, 2010 at 12:34am
@ Samu...for Fiji becoming a communist...nah !! dont think so...currently I believe that we are surving just fine...Globally !!! you should ask that question to the great United States of AMERICA...dua na dinau levu me sauma vei Jaina....and UNITED KINGDOM ..dinau talega tu ga vei Jaina...and tauyavu taka tiko e levu na bisinisi kei jaina....what we should be doing is suggesting and identifying our future leaders for the next election....guilecavi FB and lets work towards the future !!!!....GB..wais

► Reply by Samuela Tawakilai on November 8, 2010 at 8:16am
Waisake,I thank you for that response. It is always hard to accept something that we don't want to accept, which is understandable. Who ever thought that the "paradise of the pacific" will one day become a playground of lawlessness, ruled by a dictator with a forked tongues?

Since cession, Fiji's colonial rulers set up a colony that was run almost on communalism, but we call it "The Chifly System." It was a system where the "white master" and the chiefs were co-rulers, and the people were told to live in their villages, tend their "teitei" and serve the chiefs.The change from that system to the present shook the Fijians mostly, because they were not prepared for the sudden shock.Cakacaka vata was the system they were taught, almost a communist system- or am I wrong? I am asking this question because of my concern that anything can happen in the political climate that Fiji is experiencing.While Bainimarama is still at the helm; Fiji's future is still bleak, and is prudent and wise to be prepared for any eventuality that may occur.Vinaka!

► Reply by Szinestro on November 8, 2010 at 11:04am
Yes Sam, we all should be on our guard and expect the unexpected when the time comes.

► Reply by Sireli on November 8, 2010 at 1:06am
China should not replace US in Asia Pacific:US security analyst3 November 2010By ROLAND G. SIMBULAN

► Reply by Joe Bose 1 day ago
Fiji is communist now they're surviving on communist aid anyway. Further more the people have been encouraged to endorse China as a great partner for trade and commerce. Yep it wont be long before mandrin and cantonese are the primary languages of Fiji.

► Reply by Samuela Tawakilai 1 day ago
Joe Bose,Thanks for your observation. I haven't been to Fiji for some time, but I heard that there are Chinese Restaurants in almost every corner of the city streets. We seems to be sandwitched from every sides.Keimami dau kaya mai na Yatu Lau: E vaka me sa jina mai a meca kaii !

► Reply by UKoroi 1 day ago

► Reply by Joe Bose 1 day ago
Brother Samu ni ra lako mai na mataqali qoka, (ni ra tamata makawa) era kauta vatatale tikoga mai na kenai colacola. Money laundering, drug trafficking, prostitution & human trafficking, illegal gambling. E kena front wale tikoga na vale ni kana, na illegal stuff is happening behind the shop. O Viti e vakayagataki wale tikoga me staging post for drug trafficking amongst other things. What they invest into the country is nothing compared to what they're ripping off the country. Vica ga vula sa oti e discover taki kina mai Viti na kakana sa voleka ni oti na kena "use by date" mai Malasia ka sa sega ni vakatarai me volitaki mai Malasia sa mai kune ni volitaki e Viti. Qo eratou qai mai raica tale e Viti eso nai vakalesilesi ka gole mai Malasia. Ya na vanua eda sa gole tiko kina mai Viti.Me vukei keda na Kalou ena veika sa yaco tiko oqo.

► Reply by Samuela Tawakilai 2 hours ago
Joe Bose and Ukoroi,Drau bula na wekaqu, na veitalanoa 'qo e vaka e dua na gunu yaqona; era sa dui galu na lewe ni gunu yaqona, ka sa sega ni dua na tavasa se rogorogo; e so sa kedru sara, ka sa dro o qaravi yaqona; era yadra ga mai ka sega ni dua e vosa era dui curu vakamalua ki tuba - ki vale sara!E rawa ni da vakaraitayaloyalotaka na i vakarau ni bula 'oya mai noda ?Na ulutaga edatou veitalanoataka tiko e bibi toka baleta nida veimaliwai tiko kei ira na "tamata makawa," mevaka e dau kaya na qase o Butadroka: A sega na gauna ni nodra veikanikani; me vakamaumautaki gauna.

Au via kauta cake mai na i vakaraitaki ni vanua ko Maleya (Malaysia today). Era a vala e kea na noda sotia ena 1950"s ni se Colony tu ga na noda vanua. Era a vala kei ira na "Bati Kadi" (Communists) ena vanua 'oya me vica na yabaki, ka mate e kea e vica na noda sotia. O ira na "Kominisi" 'oya e ra kai Jaina, ka ra vala vata kei na matanitu ko Peritania kei ira na "Malay", o ira nai taukei ni vanua; vakataki keda na kai Viti mai Viti.E levu vei ira na kai Jaina oqori era lako mai Jaina, ka ra vinakata me Kominisi na vanua ko Maleya.Ena nodra mai tiko e Maleya; taumada era vakawatitaki ira na marama ni Maleya, ka ra kune kina na Sino- Malayans, se o ira na "kawa BABA".

Ni sa dei na yavadra, era sa qai kauti ira mai na marama ni Jaina mai "Main Land China," me mai watidra. Ni ra sa lewe levu sa tekivu me ra via vakatulewa, baleta ni tiko vei ira nai lavo, ka voleka ni ra taukena na vei Baqe kei na bisinisi lelevu mai Maleya ena gauna 'oya.Qai kena i lutua na nodra dau taleitaka na turaga ni vanua ka Maleya na bula sautu (luxury) ka vakavuna na nodra dinau vakasivia vei ira na vei baqe kai na bisinisi, ka ra taukena tu na kai Jaina. E tautauvata kei na nodra taleitaka eso vei ira na noda turaga na bula sautu ena loma n City; kei ira na kena marama ni bogi! Era sa rai toka na wekada Idia mai Viti; ka ra sa curu yani vakayauyau nai lala mai Jaina. Era raica ni ra sa taura vakatotolo na vei bisinisi ena loma ni City; ka levu vei ira era sa sasaga yani vakatotolo ki vanua tani me ra bula!Na democracy na qito ni lewelevu (numbers).

Ni sa na veisautaki na lawa ni digidigi mevaka e vinakata o Bainimarama me dua na tamatama dua na digidigi (common roll), ka ra sa na tiko e Viti e levu cake na Vulagi mai vei keda na i Taukei ni vanua; era na sega tale ni taura vakaukaua na matanitu; era na veiliutaki baleta ni sa lawa ni matanitu! E vei eda sa na tu kina ena gauna 'oya?Au na tomana tale na vakasama ka'u kauta cake tiko mai, ia au na tini toka mada eke, ka waraka eso na vakasama mai vei kemuni na noda!
Vinaka vakalevu.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Brett and Staff of Ronald McDonald House Wellington Says Thanks: For Us "Its the Thought that Counts & Not the NUMBERS!!

Ronald McDonald House Charities, [Wellington] & You.
Together We can Help Kiwi Kids Lead a Happier & Healthier Lives!

“A strong mind. A strong body. And a safe, supportive place to grow. These are things that every child needs - and deserves. Helping to provide these things is what we do.”

Donate to Donate to
Ronald McDonald House CharitiesYour donation will be used to help support all the Ronald McDonald Houses in New Zealand, plus other projects for children in need.

Fiji Day Debrief:

As a Fiji Day Project, on Saturday 09/10/2010, a few of us from the Luvei Viti (Children of Fiji) Community Group spent the afternoon preparing a BBQ meal for the Families & Children of Cancer Kids that are admitted in Wellington Hospital.

We also had a drop-in program for kids to do some activities such as colourings and drawings.

We thoroughly enjoyed the day just seeing the smiles from the kids and their parents.

Luvei Viti Community Group have for the last ten years organised activities for Children and families each year.

We often operate on a zero budget as most of what we take to RMC are gifts from the individuals that have offered to be a part of the project. Last year a group of us cooked Fijian meals for the families at RMH, Wellington and it has been a joy to do so once again again this year.

We believe the projects we organised each year or whenever are not about NUMBERS as some critics within the Fijian Communities in Wellington like to say, for those of us that avail ourselves, it is simply;


We take this opportunity to thank Brett Taylor, Manager, RMC House, Wellington and Doris, superb Duty Manager when we were there, all the families & kids at RMC House for sharing your time with us.

Last but not least, A BIG ‘VINAKA’ to Rafaele Brown, Elenoa Phillips, Christina, Fijian Youths and all those that just dropped in.

Luvei Viti Team

It all done for the love of our Children & Families & the wider Wellington Communties.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Pacific Islands
Political Studies Association

Call for papers

12th Pacific Islands Political Studies Association (PIPSA) Conference

Hosted by The University of the South Pacific, Alafua Campus, Apia, Samoa,

December 8-9, 2011

Pacific politics, Pacific communities

This is a general call for papers for the 12th PIPSA conference to be held in Apia, Samoa, hosted by the University of the South Pacific, Alafua Campus. The conference aims to explore a range of issues pertaining to the relationship between politics and community in the Pacific. The broad theme Pacific politics, Pacific communities attempts to capture the complex relationships between communities and politics at the local, national, regional and international levels. It covers a range of issues and individual papers may focus on any of these specific areas:

...participatory democracy; community and grassroots governance; sustainable development; regime change; media and democracy; migration and development; conflict and conflict resolution; regional geo-politics; regional intervention; human rights; law enforcement; land and indigenous rights; youth participation; sovereignty and autonomy; sea-level rise; poverty and marginalization; gender and participation; aid and development; cultural identity; citizenship; religion and politics; human security; regional security; globalization and free trade; community violence; intra-regional challenges; nation-building; constitutional and legal reform; electoral democracy; civil society engagement; cultural and ethnic diversity; political mobilization through virtual social networks...

The 100 word abstract should be sent to Sue Rider (, Australian National University or Folole Asaua (, University of Auckland, by 30 April 2011 and the 4,000 word paper by October 30 2011. Other details of the conference will be sent out later.
______________________________________________________________________________________________________________PIPSA Executive Committee: President, Steven Ratuva (University of Auckland); Vice-President, David Hegarty (Australian National University); Secretary, Jon Schultz (University of Melbourne); Tarcisius Kabutaulaka (University of Hawaii); Anne Brown (University of Queensland); Sandra Tarte (University of the South Pacific); Michael Leach (Swinburne University).

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Save The Children Fiji - 'Inspires Unity'.

If all else fails in Fiji, at the very least we have the Children to cater for. The challenges are what do we as parents, grand-parents tell them about the dragged-out situation Fiji is in now post 2006 coup? These part of Fiji's history will be looked upon by many in time to come as one of perhaps 'a bad dream period'.

Each morning many parents in Fiji will be waking up wondering where the next meal will come from for their children.
Is there a break somewhere to the cimate of poverty that Fiji has dived into ever since that so-called bloodless coup of 2006?
The coup have been excuted without blood-shed at the time but there has been reported deaths, beatings, abuse and continuous extensions of Public Emergency Regulations ever since.
This is not a healthy environment for our children. Some may say, we are still better off than other countries devasted by war, earthquake, disasters etc. However, by Fiji standards, Fiji citizens and those with vested interest in Fiji should not and must not be exposed to the ill-will of Bainimarama & his dictatorship. It has not done any good to anyone in Fiji or those with vested interests.

Below is an article by Fiji Times and although they may have capitalised on Save the Children Fiji's initiative, it still does not take away the bitter taste of what the people of Fiji have had to endured since coup 2006.
May God Bless Fiji & those Children that are asking many questions.

Luvei Viti Team.
Read more;
Unite for children

Samantha Rina. Saturday, October 23, 2010
Save the Children Fiji organised a two-day forum to inspire unity for stakeholders to work collectively for a safer environment for children.

SC Fiji chief executive Chandra Shekhar said non-government organisations specialising in the field of child welfare and rights had over the years individually done good work to help create a safer environment for the children of Fiji.

He said it was time to f¡o¡cus on working collectively.

Issues discussed on Tuesday included education and the commercial sexual exploitation of children.

"In our 38 years of existence, we have never had such a forum where we get our partners together to collectively address our work. We have never received any feedback from them on how effective our work has been or on how we can improve our service. So this is the first time we are organising such a forum and it is to inform our partners of our work and get their feedback," he said.

Mr Shekhar said there were several organisations doing the same work and each had programs and expertise which was kept exclusive and not shared.

"So this is a platform to open up our work and share ideas so we can help each other. Sometimes organisations have the same programs but our ways of conducting them are different. Today has been successful because throughout the symposium, we have already begun to discuss ideas on how we can work together," he said.

Mr Shekhar said a report would be compiled immediately after the symposium which would contain recommendations from participants.

The two-day workshop was attended by more than 50 people from NGOs, civil society groups, religious organisations, youths and children.

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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