Savenaca Narube. [File Photo]
The government is today demanding proof from Unity Fiji Leader Savenaca Narube that he was directed to doctor economic reports and devalue the dollar in 2009.
Narube claimed at a recent campaign meeting that he refused to follow this directive and was consequently ousted as Governor of the Reserve Bank of Fiji.
Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has questioned why Narube didn’t come forward with these allegations at that time, nor in the 2018 General Election which he contested.
Sayed-Khaiyum adds that Narube never made mention of this for more than 10 years, and is now suddenly make allegations in the lead up to a General Election.
“Where’s the proof? What did he do? Who asked him to do it? What figures did he cook up and why? Did somebody put a gun to his head? Did somebody threaten to take away the Whiskey bottle? What?”
Sayed-Khaiyum claims Narube is in no position to make aspersions because he himself had a conflict of interest, serving as Permanent Secretary for Finance and Governor of the Reserve Bank.
“Can you believe that? A person is the Permanent Secretary for Finance whilst being the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Fiji. Fiscal policy, monetary policy – we know people who monitor that need to be completely independent of each other. The audacity to talk about so-called lack of good governance et cetera when he himself was part and parcel of a demise in good governance in Fiji when he held both positions simultaneously.”
The Unity Fiji leader in response says he made no financial gain while holding the two positions.
“I didn’t get two salaries, I just got the governor’s salary. So yes, I contributed a lot to stabilising our financial situation.”
The Minister for Economy adds that Narube lost his position as Governor when the 1997 Constitution was abrogated in 2009 and not because of the reasons he is claiming.