May 09, 2021 Last Updated 7:04 AM, May 7, 2021
By Anish Chand & Nanise Volau
Fiji's National Federation Party has alleged a member of the Constitution Officers Commission is actively taking part in politics by assisting in the selection process of FijiFirst party candidates in the upcoming general elections.
And the NFP is asking Sanjay Kaba to clarify whether or not he is involved in the interview of applicants for candidacy of the ruling FijiFirst Party.
“We have reliable information that the COC member in question, Sanjay Kaba, together with Fiji First general secretary Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, is interviewing applicants seeking candidacy of the Party in the elections,” claims NFP Leader Dr Biman Prasad.
However, Kaba has neither confirmed nor denied this claim.
“I am not going to comment on that,” Kaba said when questioned by Islands Business this morning.
The NFP Leader, in a statement challenged Kaba to be honest in revealing his role “because anything else would lead us to publicly reveal more information on what the applicants for Fiji First candidacy are allegedly told by Mr Kaba”.
Dr Prasad says the COC is an independent body and its integrity has to be maintained.
“His close proximity to FijiFirst is well known. This also brings into question his appointment to several boards of statutory organisations including the Fiji National Provident Fund”. “It is for both Mr Kaba and the FijiFirst General Secretary to come out publicly and provide honest answers,” says Dr Prasad.
Last month, Islands Business had asked Kaba whether he was still the Fiji First Party’s treasurer, to which he replied “I only support the party, but I do not hold any official capacity.”
The magazine had put the question to him after it was told that a company that Kaba is a partner of had won the suppliers’ contract for the proposed work on the new office of the Prime Minister.

By Netani Rika

THE public has a right to know why commissioners have not been appointed to oversee the Fiji Anti-Discrimination and Human Rights

Commission, says National Federation Party Leader, Dr Biman Prasad.

Speaking on World Albinism Day, Prasad said the Constitutional Offices Commission had made no appointments five weeks after the term of the last commissioners ended.

“Human rights standards apply to us all regardless of our external appearances,” Prasad said.

“Fiji received the UN Special Rapporteur on Albinism only last December and yet, a month after the contracts of the previous commission expired, the government does not see fit to appoint a new commission with the urgency that such appointments are required.

“This is a clear sign that human rights standards that are set by the oversight Commission, and certainly not the Director, are merely talking points and not a genuine priority of this government.”

Prasad said the need for independence and impartiality of the Fiji Anti-Discrimination and Human Rights Commission was highlighted last year by the UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, Mutuma Ruteere.

“Unless there is rapid movement on the appointment of a new Commission, all taxpayers are entitled to question how their taxes are being poured in the Fiji Anti-Discrimination and Human Rights Commission.

The Fiji Anti-Discrimination and Human Rights Commission is headed by Ashwin Raj who also heads the Media Industry Development Authority.

By Anish Chand

The National Federation Party has written a letter to the Speaker of the House, asking her to look into providing professional anger management counselling for Fiji First backbencher Howard Politini and all tthe NFP youth members.

This is related to an incident where two of the NFP Youth Wing volunteers were allegedly bullied and threatened by the FijiFirst MP Politini.

“The NFP will not tolerate any such thug-like behaviour towards any member of our party and we seek your guidance in the resolution of this appalling behaviour that does not bring dignity and decorum to your House,” wrote the NFP whip Prem Singh.

The NFP claims their youth members are now seriously traumatised.

“This incident occurred on Constitution Avenue, just outside the main entrance into the Parliament chambers, that would be classified as out of the Parliamentary Precincts, we advise your high office that we now have to involve the Fiji Police Force with an official complaint to ensure the safety of our young people,” Singh wrote.

“This is a clear symptom of trauma from bullying,” Singh added.

The NFP is asking the Speaker to act.

“We urge your office to look into providing professional anger management counselling [for] Hon Politini and all their youth members, with a genuine apology extended to our traumatised youth members, in the presence of a professional counsellor,” says the NFP Whip.

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