Na Turaga na Tui Macuata, Ratu Wiliame Katonivere is the now the President elect, having received the majority votes in parliament.
Na Turaga na Tui Macuata, Ratu Wiliame Katonivere is now the President elect, having received the majority votes in parliament.
He secured 28 votes while Opposition nominee Ro Teimumu Kepa received 23.
In Parliament this morning, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama moved that Ratu Wiliame be President while the Opposition moved Na Marama Bale na Roko Tui Dreketi, Ro Teimumu Kepa for President.
Members of Parliament then cast secret ballots in accordance with Section 84 Subsection three of the 2013 Constitution.
Speaker of Parliament, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau has congratulated Ratu Wiliame.
“I wish to convey on behalf of parliament our warmest congratulation to Ratu Wiliame Katonivere the new President Elect of the Republic of Fiji and on your behalf I wish him the very best tenure as custodian of the Office of the President.”
Ratu Wiliame is now the third to serve in that position under the 2013 Constitution following outgoing President Jioji Konrote and his predecessor Ratu Epeli Nailatikau.
Ratu Wiliame is the youngest ever President.
He will now have to step down from his position as the president of FijiFirst.
Also, for the call of country, he will not be part of any boards, including resigning as Chair of the Fiji Pine Group. Katonivere has been the chairman of the Pine Group of Companies since 2020, which includes Fiji Pine Limited, Tropik Wood Industries Limited, and Tropik Wood Products Limited. He is also a board member for Fiji Airports, Fiji Sugar Corporation, and Rewa Rice Ltd.
He is also the first from Vanua Levu to be head of state since the late Ratu Penaia Ganilau held office from 1987-1993.
Ratu Wiliame hails from Naduri in Macuata.
He has been the chief of Macuata Province since 2013, succeeding his older brother Ratu Aisea Katonivere and has been involved in conservation initiatives of Fiji’s Great Sea Reef, having spoken at the past COP event.
Current President Jioji Konrote’s term expires next month when Ratu Wiliame will also open the new sitting of parliament.