Saturday, February 23, 2008

Co-operation or dissent in Fiji

from w
We are not posting much lately there's too much going on that is controversial, and some say, shameful. Anyway just a couple of things: some sensible people who did put their hands up to work on committees set up by the interim government are changing their minds. Such a person is Suliana Siwatibau who apparently finds that the appointment of Voreqe Bainimarama as Chair of the Council of Chiefs to be wrong.

The other item I'm posting is from Rev Josateki Koroi who has given an interesting point of view that the men and women in the army would be better off going back to plant in their food gardens.

One National News
Suliana Siwatibau quits
23 Feb 2008 02:26:42

A high profile member of the National Council for Building a Better Fiji has resigned from the NCBBF, and the two working groups she was a member of.
NGO representative Suliana Siwatibau has quit, in protest of the recent changes made to the Great Council of Chiefs. Siwatibau was the chair of one of the Working Groups established under the NCBBF, dealing with Public Institutions. She says she cannot work with the interim Government anymore. Siwatibau adds, she will re-think her decision if the interim Government changes the way it operates.

from Talatala Rev Josateki Koroi 18/2/2008

A METHODIST minister has called for the dissolution of the military and labelled the institution as one that comprised lazy, non-productive members who spent most of their time polishing shoes. Reverend Josateki Koroi said he outlined this in his letter to the National Council for Building a Better Fiji when he turned down the invitation to join. “The coup is based on a robbery philosophy. It’s like stealing from a bank to set up a school,” he said.

“If they want to create a better Fiji, then Frank (Bainimarama) and his army should grow their own food and produce food in their own villages. That’ll make a better Fiji. The faster they do this the better.”Mr Koroi claimed the army did nothing “all day, everyday” which led them to pick up their guns and frighten ordinary civilians.

“They don’t produce anything yet they receive hard-earned money. The army should be dismissed and their members sent back to the villages where they can farm and produce something for their family. They shouldn’t be allowed to depend on people’s money.
“In fact, they should not be paid. They don’t deserve any wages. The Bible says the labouring people should be honoured and fed, and the lazy should not be fed,” he said.
After he declined the invitation to the council, Mr Koroi said he was surprised at a second invitation to join an arm of the council. “I was invited to join the second working group in the good governance task team,” he said. Mr Koroi was asked to join the working group on institutional and public sector reform. “I didn’t agree with the philosophy of the charter. The whole thing is illegal. The charter is trying to create a new Fiji. I don’t believe a coup can create a new Fiji. Only God can create a new Fiji and it’s our responsibility to respect that,” he said.

Mr Koroi said the interim regime wanted to abolish the identity of Fijian people and recreate Fiji into a non-racial country. “I don’t know any country in the world that doesn’t have its own unique people. What part of the world has no indigenous people? God made all his people distinct from those of other countries, from India, China, New Zealand and Australia and Fiji is no different. The different people of each country are to be respected for that,” he said. He said it was “totally blasphemous” to deny God’s creation from being indigenous people of their country.

“A better Fiji will be built on righteousness, hard work and good governance,” Mr Koroi said. Mr Koroi said another reason he rejected the invitation to join the council and its working group was because of the interim regime’s philosophy that might was right.

Military spokesman Colonel Mohammed Aziz questioned whether Mr Koroi was speaking as a military officer. “If so, does it apply to him also? He served in active service and remains on the Retired Officers list. Officers do not resign unless they wish to be decommissioned,” was all Colonel Aziz said.

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