Home

Headlines Weather Search

News

Sports

Business

World

Radio

Radio Fiji One Mirchi FM Gold FM Bula FM 2Day FM Radio Fiji Two

TV

FBC TV FBC Sports FBC 2

Parliament

Report debate updates

September 6, 2019 2:16 pm
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, Sitiveni Rabuka, Biman Prasad and Pio Tikoduadua

Tikoduadua was a confidante of the govt says AG

Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyumm says NFP MP Pio TIkoduadua took advantage of his lengthy military career with Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.

Sayed-Khiayum in his contribution highlighted that Tikoduadua had been a confidante of Bainimarama both during their time in the military and in government.

Article continues after advertisement

He adds for Tikoduadua to then attack the Prime Minister’s family would have hurt deeply.

“I saw the deep sense of loyalty, allegiance, and camaraderie that the military actually did foster. I put myself in the shoes of the Prime Minister at the hurt and the anguish that he would have felt if the Honourable Tikoduadua had said which  he had said “you should look into your own house.”

The Attorney General stresses that the Prime Minister repeatedly tried to apologize to Tikoduadua on the afternoon of 9th August, the day after as well as the first meeting of the Privileges Committee.

 

Debate likely to go into the night

Parliament continues to debate a motion for Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua to apologize for breaches of the Parliamentary privileges.

The Privileges Committee tabled its report this morning, and the House has been engaged in debate all day, with the matter likely to continue into the evening.

MPs are at the same time debating an amendment motion by Opposition MP and SODELPA President Ro Filipe Tuisawau for Bainimarama to be suspended for 2 years.

The Committee recommendation is for Bainimarama and Tikoduadua to be suspended for six months, but only if they refuse to offer an apology in Parliament.

It is anticipated that the matter will go into the night before a vote is taken on the original Committee report and the amendment motion.

 

Opposition changed its decision in the last minute: Seruiratu

The Privileges Committee for the past four days had conducted thorough discussions says Government MP Inia Seruiratu until Opposition decided not to sign the report this morning.

Seruiratu says Committee members from Opposition side namely Adi Litia Qionibaravi and Mosese Bulitavu backed down as they assumed the report favored the government.

He says when the committee reached the final stage of signing the report – these two changed their decision on what was already agreed on.

“We have thoroughly discussed issues, we came to an agreement until this morning. Because we are going to come and debate it here in the house”.

He adds the committee was rightfully guided upon sorting legal assistance through the chair of the independent legal rights.

While supporting the motion by the government, Seruiratu urged members of Parliament to carefully examine the contexts and the nature of the offence.

Qereqeretabua condemns Privileges Committee report

NFP Parliamentarian Lenora Qereqeretabua has joined in condemning the Privileges report saying its fake justice.

Qereqeretabua claims the unfairness in the report undermines the country’s rule of law.

“When you vote for this grossly irregular report and its recommendations of fake justice, we are saying that all other crimes that happen in this house between MPs be it rape, murder, or theft, you will bind this house to endorse it as acceptable for the privileges committee to be used to cover it up. The reality is that this VIP treatment will only be rolled out for only two and not the rest.”

She also says the report strongly tries to discredit the video footage evidence and the eye-witnesses account.

Qereqeretabua urged the member of the house to make their vote count and condemns any form of violence or breaches in Parliament.

 

PM’s action was unwarranted: Aseri Radrodo

Opposition MP Aseri Radrodo says the Prime Ministers’ action on August 9th was unwarranted.

Making his contribution to the amendment motion, Radrodo says despite the provocations by NFP’s Pio Tikoduadua, Bainimarama should have followed the process and lodged a complaint rather than taking matters into his own hands.

“Of all the people he is the man who carried the highest number of votes. Of course, that carries the highest number of responsibilities as well and trust by the people of this country, especially those who voted him in. The honorable PM’s tendency to allow his emotions and temper to get the better of him is something that he needs to immediately works on, perhaps seek professional counselling as well.”

Radrodo says he also disagrees with the findings and the recommendations of the Privileges Committee and agrees with the amendment motion.

 

Accountability is dead: Tabuya

SODELPA MP Lynda Tabuya has rejected the recommendations of the Privileges Committee saying there is no democracy and that transparency and accountability are dead in Fiji

“Despite the overwhelming video evidence clearly depicting a crime, despite both cases being witnessed by Honourable Members and staff of parliament, the Press and the public – despite clear parliamentary precedent being set – 2-year suspensions with much lesser crimes on  Honourable Lalabalavu, Honourable Draunidalo, Honourable Tikoca. The following is abundantly clear, there is no justice.”

 

 Call for PM’s suspension a publicity stunt: Kumar

The call by the Opposition Members for the suspension of Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama is nothing more than a publicity stunt.

Debating on the Privileges Committee report in parliament, Minister for Employment Parveen Kumar said such a call speaks volumes of the mindset and lack of integrity from the Opposition.

Kumar today strongly spoke against any move to discipline and censor the PM – dismissing and rejecting calls for suspension.

“This call for a suspension is not just only against the Honorable Prime Minister – it is a call against his richly deserved mandate in the past two elections as leader of the FijiFirst Party. This motion is against the work he has done in championing a Fiji for all Fijians. A Fiji united under the noble banner blue.

The Minister says even though the PM was personally attacked by NFP president Pio Tikoduadua on August 9th – he still made an attempt to apologize.

“Despite all this, the Honorable Prime Minister had walked with his head high to your high office as a true leader to formally apologize the very same afternoon but we cannot say the same for Honorable Pio because he was nowhere to be seen.”

Kumar adds the National Federation Party and Tikoduadua failed to assess the situation and the seriousness of the matter.

 

I am not justifying violence: Vuniwaqa

Minister for Women Mereseini Vuniwaqa says the Parliamentary Privileges Committee has found that both Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and National Federation Party MP, Pio Tikoduadua were wrong in their actions.

Vuniwaqa says the Opposition MPs are barking up the wrong tree and portraying that the report was not wrong.

She adds that she is not justifying violence, but the Privileges Committee had found both men wrong and has put in place penalties for the two.

“Prime Minister was wrong, Tikoduadua as well was wrong, they have put in place the recommendations for Penalty the power that they have, really it’s the penalty that is the issue here.”

She says the PM had tried to hold a talanoa session with Tikoduadua after the alleged altercation and apologized for his actions of August 9.

 

Let us not attack any family members of any MPs

Let us not attack any families of any Members of Parliament says Infrastructure and Transport Minister, Jone Usumate.

Usamate says there have been numerous attacks by members of the public against the MPs and their families, but this should not be the case in Parliament.

He says it was okay to attack each other and have a debate in Parliament but family should be left out.

Usamate says the attack on family members of MPs was already being done by people outside of Parliament.

He further adds that recommendations by the Privileges Committee are something that needed to be supported.

 

Apply what has been applied before : Gavoka

Opposition MP Viliame Gavoka supports the amendment motion to have Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama suspended for two years.

Debating on the final report provided by the Privileges Committee on the case of the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Pio Tikoduadua, Gavoka says the parliament should act with fairness.

He says if it has been done in the past it must be done to Bainimarama as well.

“I believe I speak on behalf of most people in this country to say that the apology or the six months suspension is unacceptable.”

Gavoka says it is ludicrous that Bainimarama should be asked to apologies or be suspended for six months.

 

Ro Teimumu supports two-year suspension 

Opposition MP Ro Teimumu Kepa supports the amendment motion to have Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama suspended for two years.

In her contribution, she likened the FijiFirst to frightened mice.

“You can be whatever you re-invent yourself to be FijiFirst – until the cows come home. You can surround yourself with numerous bodyguards and security personnel. Without moral principles, moral integrity and moral courage, you will always be frightened little mice.”

Ro Teimumu also referred to the cases of Ratu Naiqama Lalabalabu, Roko Tupou Draunidalo and Isoa Tikoca who were each suspended for two years for their breaches of Parliamentary privilege.

Debate continues this afternoon.

 

Tikoduadua gave birth to family trolls

Fiji First MP Adi Selai Adimaitoga says the actions of NFP’s Pio Tikoduadua of August 9, has sent a wrong signal to Fijians.

She says the alleged attack on the family of the Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, has given rise to trolls on Social Media, where people are now taking personal attacks to the next level.

Adimaitoga says it is okay for someone to attack the policies and work but family is sacred and should not be touched.

She further says that the PM was of a different character and has not attacked anyone’s family ever.

Adimaitoga says Bainimarama was also an honorable man as he seemed to have an audience and apologize after his actions.

 

Privilege Committee is evil: Nawaikula

Opposition and SODELPA MP Niko Nawaikula has labelled the Privileges Committee as an evil Committee.

While debating on the final report provided by the Committee on the case of the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Pio Tikoduadua, Nawaikula says the Committee is evil as there is no justice and fairness.

Nawaikula says if there is a chance for him to become the Speaker of the House, he will remove the committee because of the kind of ruling they have delivered.

He says this kind of legal case should not be deliberated by politicians and parliament should allow the criminal proceedings to take its full course.

Nawaikula has also questioned Bainimarama’s absence from parliament today saying that he should front up on all the debate about the issue.

Nawaikula pointed out the Speaker’s ruling to let the Privileges Committee deliberate on the case, he claimed the decision was wrong to convene the committee because of the criminal nature of the case.

 

Opposition Committee members wanted to sign says Maharaj

Fiji First MP and member of the Privileges Committee Alvick Maharaj claims his fellow committee members and Opposition MPs, Adi Litia Qionibaravi and Mosese Bulitavu were pressured into not sighing the report.

Maharaj says the two members kept on coming up with reasons for not signing and the committee kept on entertaining this.

He says they had initially agreed to sign the report but buckled under pressure.

 

He has also claimed that there was an Opposition MP who was always roaming outside the meeting room trying to talk to Adi Litia and Bulitavu.

Maharaj says two wrongs don’t make a right but the PM was bold enough to take the next course of action and apologize.

He adds that NFP MP, Pio Tikoduadua was trying to justify that the words uttered was not an attack against the family of the PM but the Government aide of the house.

 

Pio became personal against a former close ally

Fiji First MP Premila Kumar says the alleged personal attack by National Federation Party’s Pio Tikoduadua was wrong in resorting to a personal attack against someone he was close to previously.

The Minister for Trade and Tourism says Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Tikoduadua both hail from the same province and had worked together in Government.

She says it was a natural reaction from the PM as he felt hurt and he later realized that his reaction was wrong.

Kumar says Bainimarama was a leader who was not afraid to accept his actions and takes responsibility and this showed when the Prime Minister met the Speaker to apologize.

She says the committee found both men guilty of wrongdoing and the motion for an apology was something that was the way to go.

 

Committee has found both wrong says Vuniwaqa

Minister for Women and Social Welfare Mereseini Vuniwaqa says the Parliamentary Privileges Committee has found that both the Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and National Federation Party MP, Pio Tikoduadua were wrong in their actions.

Vuniwaqa says the Opposition MPs are barking up the wrong tree, and portraying that the report was not wrong.

She says the PM had tried to hold a talanoa session with Tikoduadua after the alleged altercation and apologized for his actions of August 9.

“Prime Minister was wrong, Tikoduadua as well was wrong, they have put in place the recommendations for Penalty the power that they have, really it’s the penalty that is the issue here.”

Vuniwaqa says she is not justifying violence, but the Privileges Committee had found both men wrong and has put in place penalties for the two.

 

Jale disagrees with the recommendations

SODELPA MP Anare Jale while delivering his speech on the motion in place, called for more fairness in the Privileges Committee’s report recommendation.

Jale says the recommended penalty in the report is unjust and unfair.

“In my view honorable speaker the breach of privilege by Pio Tikoduadua, if he had done so is minor as compared to the breach of privilege by the Prime Minister which I view as very serious.”

Jale says the Parliamentarians need to uphold fairness and truth as it is their duty to the Fijian people.

 

 

 

Keep Connected With The Latest News, Weather, And Sports on Fiji's Best Radio stations.

Live Tune In
  • 95.4 FM
  • Suva, Nadi, Lautoka, Labasa
  • 95.2 FM
  • Sigatoka, Ba
  • 95.6 FM
  • Tavua
  • 95.8 FM
  • Rakiraki
Live Tune In
  • 102.6 FM
  • Suva, Nadi, Lautoka, Labasa
  • 102.4 FM
  • Sigatoka, Ba
  • 102.8 FM
  • Tavua
  • 103.0 FM
  • Rakiraki
Live Tune In
  • 97.8 FM
  • Suva, Nadi, Lautoka, Labasa
  • 97.6 FM
  • Sigatoka, Ba
  • 98.0 FM
  • Tavua
  • 98.2 FM
  • Rakiraki
Live Tune In
  • 93.0 FM
  • Suva, Nadi, Lautoka, Labasa
  • 92.8 FM
  • Sigatoka, Ba
  • 93.2 FM
  • Tavua
  • 93.4 FM
  • Rakiraki
Live Tune In
  • 100.2 FM
  • Suva, Nadi, Lautoka, Labasa
  • 100.0 FM
  • Sigatoka, Ba
  • 100.4 FM
  • Tavua
  • 100.6 FM
  • Rakiraki
Live Tune In
  • 105.0 FM
  • Suva, Nadi, Lautoka, Labasa
  • 104.8 FM
  • Sigatoka, Ba
  • 105.2 FM
  • Tavua
  • 105.4 FM
  • Rakiraki