Tag Archive | Rebellion

The wages of dictatorship

Vinaka vaka levu to Michael Field for his tireless work in exposing the lies at the heart of the illegal regime.

Revealed: A couple of little known facts

Voreqe Bainimarama is paying himself an annual salary of FJD$267,000.

Not bad, but not as good as his peon, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

He pays himself FJD$336,000 per annum.

Makes you wonder who the boss really is? Whose coup is it?

The extravagant salaries for the two men are justified – in their eyes anyway – by saying that the collect payment for each portfolio they have awarded themselves.

In any other jurisdiction, this would be called looting, theft or robbery.

You get the sense that the looters know they are at risk because they receive their cash via a backdoor method, rather than through the Ministry of Finance.

An accountant, one Nur Bano Ali of BDO Ali, an accountancy firm, hands out the booty. BDO is part of a worldwide network of accountants; paymastering to a dictatorship is not, until now, been a major business focus for them.

BDO have also just won a big contract to reform Rewa Dairy.

Perhaps they are brilliant at cooking the books, but more than likely it has something to do with the fact that Nur Bano Ali is known to Sayed-Khaiyum as Aunty – she is his mother’s youngest sister.

Keep it all in the family….

While we’re talking about accountants, its intriguing to notice that Ernst and Young in Suva have had to brush up a lot lately about money laundering and the law applying to it. And their advice to the police was not invoiced; their accountants were being interrogated whether they liked it or not.

Not that Ernst and Young had anything especially on their conscience – just one of their high profile clients might be in serious trouble – unless Bainimarama and Sayed-Khaiyum can persuade (or direct) the fraud to turn a blind eye.

And surely, that is impossible? Bainimarama seized power to end corruption, right?

August 7, 2010

Why should We The People have to put up with this regime any more?  Free and fair elections NOW!

God bless Fiji

Egg on OmniVore’s face

So the Dictator could not resist gloating to the media for what he feels is a PR victory for him.

The man who is so accustomed to being told what he wants to hear, and only hearing what he wants to hear, refuses to understand that the foreign ministers and officials who are attending the meeting are doing so in order to voice their concerns with him. They have not come to Fiji to be OmniVore’s cheer leaders, no matter how much his ego longs for it to be so.

Want to show your distaste for the illegal regime? Why not write a message to each of the foreign ministers and officers attending the summit, photocopy the message and deliver it to their hotel?!  Tell them of your yearning to return to free and fresh elections. Tell them of your wish for a return to democracy. Tell them of how bright and prosperous our future was before OmniVore decided he wasn’t going to face trial for murder, and decided to act on his own lies and deceit.  Tell them your true opinion, thoughts, hopes and dreams.  Be sure NOT to put your name or identifying information on the messages, because the regime will no doubt persecute you for voicing your opinion (Big Brother SSJ’s is still trying to tap our mobile calls, don’t forget).

The Pacific won’t know how much We The People revile the illegal regime, unless we let them know. It is possible to argue fear of oppression and retaliation – but wouldn’t you rather try your hardest than live in fear?

Don’t give up the fight. Keep the faith.

God bless Fiji

Fiji’s dictator mustn’t get away with censorship attempt

THE internet, Rupert Murdoch famously declared in 1993, is “an unambiguous threat to totalitarian regimes everywhere”.

It was a comment that caused the Chinese to slam shut the door to Western media. Now, almost two decades on and in a much smaller pond, Murdoch is being invited to back up his words with deeds.

Can a bunch of internet-enabled freedom fighters or radio pirates bring down a dictator?

This is the question facing Usaia Waqatairewa, the Sydney-based president of the Fiji Democracy and Freedom Movement, who has asked for support from News Limited, the Australian arm of Murdoch’s global News Corporation (publisher of The Australian.) He wants to take the fight for democracy up to Fiji’s military dictatorship, headed by Commodore Frank Bainimarama.

Bainimarama has issued a decree that orders News to sell down its 100 per cent ownership of the 141-year-old Fiji Times newspaper to no more than 10 per cent. His decree stipulates that 90 per cent of ownership of media properties must be in the hands of indigenous Fijians, resident in Fiji.
News was given a three-month deadline to comply. It has described the decree as “appalling”, “outrageous” and “a terrible blow to the fragile economy of Fiji” but has been otherwise measured in its response, calling in international accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers to advise on values, potential for buyers and the like.

This approach is designed to provide the maximum possible protection to the 180 staff of the Times — editors, journalists and sales people who have already felt the hot breath of censorship and military intimidation for the past two years.

Bainimarama’s thugs have been censoring news since they took power in 2006, roughing up reporters and other staff, and ordering the deportation of two successive managing directors appointed from Australia. They also kicked out Australia’s acting high commissioner last week.

I can fully appreciate the need for a steady hand here, but Bainimarama’s actions invite some instinctive reactions: freedom of the press is paramount; dictators must never be allowed to get away with their self-serving censorship; and if there is a choice between kowtowing to their demands and standing up and fighting, a fight it must be.

It seems to me there’s little use in News looking for a Fijian national to buy 90 per cent of the Fiji Times. I’d guess a PwC valuation of the business would be in the region of $100 million, and not many locals would fit the bill on that basis. But even if there were a local buyer, that would mean the paper would have to live within the rules set down by the dictatorship — bending the news, giving in to the slice of the censor’s knife and abandoning its duty to its audience. It’s either that or the owner faces years of imprisonment. It could be argued that, in the event of a sale, this would not be News’s worry. But if the company were to put the future of press freedom, the future of Fiji’s democracy, and the wellbeing of the Fiji people before all else, it could embrace a more dramatic response: stop the presses, close the business and establish an off-shore internet-based reporting operation dedicated to exposing the dictatorship’s activities.

The internet has already been shown as one of democracy’s greatest assets, a point made by Murdoch with his “unambiguous threat” speech of 1993. Anyone connected anywhere can search for information at myriad levels. It is the ultimate tool of transparency, and transparency is the greatest fear of dictators.

Usaia Waqatairewa is a Fijian expat living in Sydney. He knows Bainimarama well, coming from a neighbouring village. He says the Fijian people have been feeling the increasing pain of the dictatorship for the past three years; the middle class is fleeing and the ruling clique is open to do business with international crime and terror organisations.

He wishes the Australian government would apply more pressure on Bainimarama by discouraging tourists from holidaying on the island, pressuring airlines to cut services and encouraging Australian shippers and banks to resist the government. “With political will, the Australian government could help us.”

Waqatairewa says the censorship of news in print, TV and radio is like revisiting the 1970s world of the eastern bloc, Saddam Hussein’s Iraq or North Korea. “It’s gloves off between me and Frank Bainimarama,” he declares.

Waqatairewa has had talks with News Limited since the sell-or-else decree. “I would be very happy if such a giant global corporation could support us in our opposition to this tin-pot dictatorship,” he says. “The last thing they want is a free press commenting on everything they do.

“Our movement has branches in Sydney, Melbourne, Townsville, New Zealand, the US west coast and among the Fiji underground. We have journalists under cover and moles in the public service. We know how to access vital documents that are hidden from the public.

“We could, with a little help, establish a web news service aimed at keeping the people of Fiji informed about their illegal government.”

Waqatairewa agrees there may be some limits to this approach, as the internet is not yet ubiquitous in Fiji. “I told News that even better than a website would be to put a boat into international waters near Fiji and broadcast our message against the government on AM and FM because in every home, in every village, there is a radio.

“Sure, the dictatorship might try to jam us, but we would simply move frequencies. The ship need only be a floating transmitter, because we could send the signal from Australia on a live stream over the net. It would not be difficult to do.”

Waqatairewa says he raised the idea with News but has not had a response. That’s not surprising given the fluid situation, the ticklish diplomatic issues and concerns for the Times staff.

But if democracy and the freedom of the press are to mean anything, Bainimarama’s actions cannot be ignored or appeased. In the old days, we might have sent a gunboat. The idea of a pirate radio ship roaming the South Seas is far more appealing.

Unfortunately, these days the pirates are in government house, instead of at sea, or in a radio station.

God bless Fiji

EU makes fresh bid to influence Fiji with sugar money threat

New Zealand Herald Wednesday Oct 07, 2009
By Claire Trevett

The European Union has invited Fiji back to the negotiating table over millions of dollars of sugar industry subsidies the country is in danger of losing.

But the EU’s Pacific director, Roger Moore, doubts that external pressure can produce a swift return to democracy in Fiji.

The European Union has invited Fiji for further discussions over the sugar cane development money – worth about $500 million – despite failing to meet its initial commitment to hold elections this year.

Mr Moore was in Fiji last week on his way to New Zealand for a meeting about aid. He did not meet interim Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama because on the day he was in Fiji, Suva was was evacuated for fear of tsunamis.

But he hoped Fiji would agree to renegotiate the conditions for the release of the sugar money within a month.

If no replacement agreement was found, Fiji risked losing the money.

He said he made it clear that Fiji would need to provide a “viable alternative” to the promises it had already broken regarding elections for the money to remain within its reach.

But Mr Moore doubted that the value of the subsidies would be enough to force it into early elections.

“My own view is that Bainimarama is somebody who has a vision and he’s going to go for it. And there’s not much that’s going to deflect him. I don’t think it’s going to be external pressure that’s going to force it.”

Mr Moore said the EU was largely taking its lead from the Pacific Islands Forum “and particularly New Zealand” in dealing with Fiji. The EU had found New Zealand “is the island that knows Fiji better”.

“If New Zealand knows the place best, then let them take political leadership. We would rather lend them our economic and political clout.”

He did not believe there should be a civil uprising in Fiji – “they’ve got quite a good Army and it’s well disciplined. That could be a rather messy way of dealing with it.”

He was instead hoping for an agreement on the substance of the electoral reforms needed and on land access issues between the main political groups in Fiji.

Mr Moore was in New Zealand heading an EU delegation that met Australian and New Zealand officials yesterday to discuss ways the three could better co-ordinate their aid efforts in the Pacific.

The European Union is one of the largest donors in the Pacific, with Australia and New Zealand.

Yesterday’s meeting followed a compact signed by Pacific Island Forum leaders in Cairns in August, calling for greater co-ordination of development and aid funding and for it to be focused on improving economic growth.

Mr Moore said he agreed with Prime Minister John Key’s views that China should also be encouraged to work with the other countries.

“Will they buy into it or not? We will see.”

He believed New Zealand’s free-trade agreement with China could be helpful in that process.

“I think the closer we get to operating with China, the better, and certainly one agreement is going to help another.”

The EU has committed about $1 billion to aid in the Pacific to 2013 to assist stability and the environment.

This is a dangerous sign, people. International bodies and foreign governments are now starting to accept the illegal Dictator, and treating him as our head of state. Vore does not deserve such treatment. We The People owe it to ourselves, and our beloved Fiji, to not legitimise the unspeakable, murderous pig.

We want fresh elections!

NOW!

God bless Fiji

SNAFU on Planet Vore

Rumour : RFMF choir continues to recruit musicians in their preparations for the Methodist Church Conference.  

Possible explanations

a) The RFMF Choir manager is a complete optomist 

b) Vore wants it to look like the military wants the annual Conference to go ahead

c) Vore wants to win the Choir competition so badly that he wants the other choirs in Fiji to be unprepared

 

Rumour: Reverend Kanailagi was forcefully and unceremoniously manhandled out of his house by three soldiers.  Rev. Kanailagi asked the soldiers in Fijian who ordered them to come and take him. They replied the Commander did to which he replied if Frank is a man and he has something he wants to ask me he should do it himself.  Two of the soldiers who detained Rev. Kanailagi passed away this morning. 

Possible explanations

a) Vore’s just a blerry coward, eh? 

b) The faith of the Methodist Church leaders and their flock are no mere trifle.  Lord hear our prayer.  

c) The soldiers themselves are conflicted about the orders Vore is forcing them to follow 

d) Some things just defy explanation

 

Rumour: Vore wants to dissolve the Methodist Church in Fiji and replace it with the psycho … sorry … the New Methodist Church.  

Possible explanations

a) Vore does not understand True Faith.  He still can’t understand how our fasts can have such a huge impact on his tinpot rule, but they do.  He has no respect for any religion (outside of his own, and the Catholics don’t exactly have  spotless record for living in peace, harmony and tolerance with other faiths).  Otherwise, how could he – even as hopelessly stupid as he is – think that you can easily substitute one Faith for another, like he is trying to do with our institutions?  Faith is a very powerful thing Vore.  You tamper at your peril.  

b) The guy is a nutter

 

Rumour: Vore is sending his goons to try and infiltrate the Rotuman and Indian circuits of the Methodist Church, believing he might have more impact there.  

Possible explanations:

a) Well, like I said before – the guy is a hopelessly stupid, cowardly nutter

 

God bless Fiji

In support of Ro Teimumu Kepa and our Methodist Church leaders

From Raw Fiji News

I write to offer my support and solidarity to the Gone Marama Bale na Roko Tui Dreketi, who was unjustly and unceremoniously detained in the past few days.

The boldness and courage of this Lady and leader in making a stand against the devious, self-serving, and ultimately self-defeating manipulation of the present illegal Regime, is a breath of fresh air in the cynical and dishonorable times we now live in.

As disgraceful as her detention is though, we must nonetheless accept in faith that this IS all part of God’s Plan, as the lady herself so eloquently put it in her letter to her people.

Jesus, Himself began the battle to throw off darkness and evil, and to replace it with His Kingdom, with His death on Calvary’s Cross.

Since then, Christians have always been impelled by the implications of their faith to struggle and stand against evil. St Telemachus for instance was, by his own death, instrumental in ending the barbaric practice of gladiatorial death sport in the Roman Empire. William Wilberforce, by his life of sacrifice, spearheaded the abolition of slavery in Victorian times. Lord Shaftsbury’s exertions kick-started the dawn of industrial emancipation and worker’s rights during the same era. Elizabeth Fry was the first prison reformer. Samuel Plimsoll spearheaded shipping safety regulations and reform. John Wesley, St Vincent de Paul (Ladies of Charity) and William Booth (Salvation Army) founded pioneering organizations to succor and minister to the poor in the preceding Century. Later the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King forfeited even his own life for his stand of faith and principle against the insidious scourge of racism.

In all cases, these Christian saints acted out of the dictates of their faith, at great personal cost and risk, often against brutal or hardnosed Governments that were either indifferent to the injustice, or who were part of it themselves under the lobbying and control of those, who were directly benefitting from the status quo. But not one of them ever backed down, as to do so would mean betraying their consciences as well as their God.

Fiji once again finds herself faced by this kind of evil. In 2000 it was Speight. Now it is Bainimarama. In 2000 it was rebellion. In 2006/9, the rebellion has succeeded and the Barbarians have risen to power on the back of guns, brutality, lies and intransigence. The situation seems hopeless and the usurpers seem to hold all the cards that count.

But just as the injustice and evil of the past always raised up Christian movers and shakers of conscience to opposition, so are the lies, wickedness and travesty of Bainimarama’s Fiji raising up champions like Ro Teimumu Kepa.

The question for people like her is “Are we our brother’s keeper?” According to God’s law, and people’s man-made constitutional law and values, yes we are. These are for two reasons, the work of the Church in the community, and its prophetic role against the injustice of this coup. The Regime is WRONG to try and stop either.

In any crises management there are four pitfalls that stakeholders may fall into. These are panic, apathy, fear and denial. Good leaders are able to communicate the truth, and inspire peoples’ spirits in order to strategically motivate them out of those pitfalls into just and righteous action. Winston Churchill is the best crises manager known in history when he fearlessly asked for the British peoples’ steadfastness knowing that the technically superior German Army were preparing to bomb London. And England won the battle and the war.

Like the infamous Nazi propaganda machine, Bainimarama’s illegal Regime also hopes to use its ridiculous PER and hand-picked judiciary to deny Ro Temumu-Kepa and the Methodist Church leaders’ right to be their “brother’s keeper”.

But whatever unjust and unjustifiable trumped up charges and punishment they dream up, they will NOT prevail!

Dr. Mere Tuisalalo Samisoni, SDL member for Lami Open Constituency