Sayed-Khaiyum among others resign from FijiFirst

June 10, 2024 12:50 pm

[Source: FijiFirst/ Facebook]

Former Prime Minister and FijiFirst Leader Voreqe Bainimarama is amongst those who have resigned from the party.

Bainimarama has resigned as a founding member, leader and member of FF.

FijiFirst founding member Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum also confirms that along with him, Party President Ratu Joji Satakala and Vice President Adi Selai Adimaitoga have also resigned from their positions and as party members.

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Second Vice President Ravindran Kumaran has also resigned from both party and his position.

Sayed-Khaiyum says Shailesh Kumar has also resigned as a founding member and member of FijiFirst.

[Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum]

Sayed-Khaiyum confirms Acting General Secretary Faiyaz Koya and Acting Party Treasurer Hem Chand have also tendered their resignations as office bearers.

Koya and Chand will remain as MPs as they are still members of parliament.

While speaking to the media outside court this morning, Sayed-Khaiyum acknowledged the supporters.

Sayed-Khaiyum says they have resigned due to a few reasons.

He claims following the voting on the Emoluments Committee Report by the 16 Members of FijiFirst there has been a lot of incidences.

He claims that FijiFirst office, Faiyaz Koya’s house, his house and law firm were searched by Fiji Independent Commission against Corruption.

Sayed-Khaiyum says that the now former party leader was questioned as to when and how he signed the letter which was sent to Speaker of Parliament Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu.

He says there are prisoners who are incarcerated, sign documents when they come to court questioning the difference between Bainimarama and other ordinary prisoners signing a letter.

Sayed-Khaiyum says the entire structure is now being engineered towards ensuring that the law is not being followed and the 16 MPs who voted in favour of the Emoluments Committee report to increase the salaries and allowances of Members of Parliament get to keep their seats.

He says this is actually political and state institutions that is being used.

“So we now have a situation where we have 17 people who voted for a pay rise when the rest of Fiji is suffering. Ordinary people, these police officers, prison wardens, ordinary Fijians who work in factories are not getting a pay rise. But these 17 people who voted for a pay rise compromised the principle of Fiji First. If you read the constitution of Fiji First, it talks about ensuring there’s equality, economic equality, some form of parity, that takes cognizance of the working-class people of this country.”

Sayed-Khaiyum says it is quite sad that a party that was built upon those principles and values, equality and justice and fairness has been compromised by the 16 individuals who voted in favor of the report.

He says they did not make any comments previously as they believed there was an adjudication process.

“When a party writes a letter under section 63 those members lose or the seats become vacant, should they within seven days, seek to have the matter heard, or challenge the validity of the vacancy, they go to a court of disputed returns within seven days, the moment they do that, then they become suspended. The speaker did not issue any such letter about the vacancy of the seats nor have they to date as far as we know nor have they filed any petition. In the court of disputed returns. Now all of that has happened, so my point being, is that they obviously have taken self-interest first.”

He also questioned the justification of a pay rise in this economic climate which has led to the resignation of certain party members.

Meanwhile, it was confirmed last week the 17 FijiFirst Members of Parliament who were terminated by the party last week, will remain MPs until further notice.

It was also confirmed the party has received a letter from Speaker of Parliament Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu, stating he will not take any action as he is waiting for legal advice from Solicitor General, Ropate Green.

The MPs are Mosese Bulitavu, Sanjay Kirpal, Semi Koroilavesau, Shalen Kumar, Virendra Lal, Ioane Naivalurua, Sachida Nand, Vijay Nath, Viliame Naupoto, Ratu Josaia Niudamu, Penioni Ravunawa, Taito Rokomatu, Inia Seruiratu, Alipate Tuicolo, Naisa Tuinaceva and Jone Usamate.

Also terminated was Alvick Maharaj who was part of the Emoluments Committee.

FBC News has sent questions to the Registrar of Political Parties and FICAC.