April 29, 2007

A chronological break-down of what they committed to in Brussels

  • May 2007: Lifting of Public Emergency Regulations subject to any threats to national security, public order and safety;
  • 30 June 2007: Schedule is set detailing dates for the completion of the various steps to be taken in preparation for the new Parliamentary Elections;
  • From 30 June 2007: Commencement of quarterly reports to the EU regarding the essential elements of the Cotonou Agreement and the commitments;

  • 15 July 2007: A Tribunal is appointed as per section 138(3) of the Constitution:

138(3) If the President considers that the question of removing a judge from office be investigated, then:
(a) the President appoints:
(i) in the case of alleged misbehaviour—a tribunal, consisting of a chairperson and not less than 2 other members, selected by the President from among persons who hold or have held high judicial office in the Fiji Islands or in another country prescribed by the Parliament; and
(ii) in the case of alleged inability to perform the functions of office—a medical board, consisting of a chairperson and 2 other members, each of whom is a qualified medical practitioner;

(b) the tribunal or medical board enquiries into the matter and furnishes a written report of the facts to the President and advises the President whether or not the judge should be removed from office; and

(c) if the tribunal or medical board advises that the judge should be removed from office, the President may remove the judge from office.

  • 30 September 2007: The Elections Office is functioning and the constitutional appointment of a Supervisor of Elections is made;
  • Elections no later than 1 March 2009 in conjunction with the assessments and findings of the Pacific Islands Forum appointed candidates conducting the Independent Technical Assessment of the Election Timetable for Fiji.

Outcomes of EU Meeting: Brussels, 18 April 2007

As of 21.40 h

Opening of Consultations with the REPUBLIC OF FIJI ISLANDS under Article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement (Brussels, 18 April 2007)

- Conclusions of the European Union -

The European Union attaches the highest importance to political dialogue with its ACP partners and to the stipulations of Article 9 of the ACP-EC Cotonou Agreement. Respect for human rights, democratic principles and the rule of law constitute the essential elements of the Partnership Agreement. Together with good governance, with is a fundamental element, they form the basis of our relations.

The European Union considers that the military take-over which took place in the Republic of Fiji Islands on 5 December 2006 constitutes a breach of the essential elements of Article 9 in the Cotonou Agreement, and of Article 3.1 of the Development Cooperation Instrument. The European Union further states that it considers essential that the rule of law is restored and that the political rights of all citizens in Fiji are respective equally and on the basis of Fiji’s Constitution. The EU encourages Fiji to examine the roots of the “coup culture” and the means to eradicate it. For these reasons, the European Union invited Fiji for consultations. In order to facilitate comprehensive discussions and an optimal outcome the consultations took place under Article 96 of the Cotonou Agreement, and for the relevant instruments under Article 37 of the Development Cooperation Instrument.

During the opening of these consultations, which took place in Brussels, on 18 April 2007, the European Union noted with satisfaction that the Fijian Party confirmed certain commitments already undertaken, notably in the context of the consultations of the Pacific Islands Forum.

The European Union also takes note of the submission presented by Fiji on 18 April 2007 for the consultations.

At the outcome of the consultations a number of commitments were undertaken by Fiji. These commitments are set out in the annex.

Fiji’s authorities commit themselves to a joint monitoring of the progress achieved in the relevant areas on implementation of all the commitments.

In the spirit of the partnership on which the Cotonou Agreement is based, the European Union declares its readiness to support key commitments.

The European Union will continue and deepen the political dialogue with Fiji to ensure the earliest possible restoration of respect for human rights, democratic principles and the rule of law. Respect for the essential elements of the Cotonou Agreement constitutes a prerequisite for the full normalization of relations with Fiji. This dialogue will be conducted with a view to contributing to the establishment of a democratic political order which can provide Fiji with the stability needed for human dignity and sustainable socio-economic development.

On the basis of the report, which the Fijian side agrees to provide regarding the above-mentioned commitments, the European Union will monitor the situation very closely and, in particular, the commitments guaranteeing early and credible general elections foreseen for not later of 1 March 2009.

The importance of and the implementation of the commitments undertaken by Fiji will fundamentally influence the nature and scope of the appropriate measures to be decided on following these consultations.

In particular, the European Union would be ready to support efforts for the return to democracy and improve governance, as well as for the transition towards full respect for the essential elements of Article 9 of the Cotonou Agreement. In addition, the European Union confirms its commitment to protecting the poor.

The European Union welcomes the cooperation of the Fijian interim authorities, which is essential for the ability of the European Union to continue to assist Fiji in its development.

Taking into account the positive outcome of the consultations, based on the commitments undertaken by the Republic of Fiji Islands, the EU will consider appropriate measures for which the Commission will make proposals in due time.


Agreed commitments

A. Respect for Democratic Principles

Commitment No. 1

That the free and fair parliamentary elections take place within 24 months from 1 March 2007 subject to the findings of the assessment to be carried out by the independent auditors appointed by the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat. The processes leading to and the holding of the elections shall be jointly monitored, adapted and revised as necessary on the basis of mutually agreed benchmarks. This implies in particular:

  • That by 30 June 2007 the Interim Government will adopt a schedule setting out dates for the completion of the various steps to be taken in preparation for the new Parliamentary Elections;
  • That the schedule specifies the timing of census, redrafting of boundaries and electoral reform;
  • That determination of boundaries and electoral reform shall be carried out in accordance with the Constitution;
  • That measures will be taken to ensure the functioning of the Elections Office including the appointment of a Supervisor of Elections by 30 September 2007 in accordance with the Constitution;
  • That the appointment of the Vice President shall be made in accordance with the Constitution.

Commitment No. 2

That the Interim Government, when adopting major legislative, fiscal and other policy initiatives and changes, shall take into account consultations with civil society and all other relevant stakeholders.

B. Rule of Law

Commitment No. 1

That the Interim Government shall use best endeavours to prevent statements by security agencies destined to intimidate.

Commitment No. 2

That the Interim Government upholds the 1997 Constitution, and guarantees the normal and independent functioning of Constitutional institutions such as the Fiji Human Rights Commission, Public Service Commission, Constitutional Offices Commission. The substantial independence and functioning of the Great Council of Chiefs will be preserved.

Commitment No. 3

That the independence of the judiciary is fully respected, that it is allowed to work freely and that its rulings are respected by all concerned parties, in particular:

  • That the Interim Government undertakes that the tribunal pursuant to Section 138 (3) of the Constitution be appointed by 15 July 2007;
  • That any appointment and/or dismissal of judges is henceforth carried out in strict conformity with Constitutional provisions and procedural rules;
  • That no instances whatsoever occur, of whatever form, or interference by the military and the police or by the Interim Government with the judicial process, including full respect for the legal profession.

Commitment No. 4

That all criminal proceedings linked to corruption are dealt with through appropriate judicial channels and that any other bodies that may be set up to investigate alleged cases of corruption will operate within constitutional boundaries.

C. Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms

Commitment No. 1

The Interim Government will take all necessary steps to facilitate that all allegations of human rights infringements are investigated or dealt with in accordance with the various procedures and forums under the laws of the Fiji Islands.

Commitment No. 2

The Interim Government intends to lift the Public Emergency Regulations in May 2007 subject to any threats to national security, public order and safety.

Commitment No. 3

The Interim Government is committed to ensuring that the Fiji Human Rights Commission functions with full independence and in accordance with the Constitution.

Commitment No. 4

That the freedom of expression and the freedom of the media, in all its forms are fully respected as provided in the Constitution.

D. Follow-up of Commitments

Commitment No. 1

That the Interim Government undertakes to maintain a regular dialogue to allow verification of progress made and gives EU and EC authorities/representatives full access to information on all matters linked to human rights, the peaceful restoration of democracy and the rule of law in Fiji.

Commitment No.2

That the Interim Government cooperates fully with eventual missions from the EU and the EC for assessing and monitoring progress.

Commitment No. 3

That the Interim Government sends progress reports every three (3) months starting 30 June regarding the essential elements of the Cotonou Agreement and the commitments.

It is noted that certain issues can only be effectively addressed through a pragmatic approach which acknowledges the realities of the present and which focuses on the future.

April 27, 2007

Reflections on the May Day initiative

From the desk of Cassandra

I sincerely hope readers will momentarily indulge me when I smugly point out how relatively (and selfishly) happy I am to be safely quarantined from that loathsome oaf; Bainimarama, by a goodly stretch of some of the planet's deepest ocean.

Because they should also know that even that mighty barrier does not render me entirely immune to spontaneous metamorphisms strangely and silently induced by the advent on 5th December last of that dizzyingly dyslexic and deadly dangerous dictator.

Take, for example, May Day. Your correspondent must confess that until a few weeks ago he regarded observance of International Workers Day as a little too Bolshevic for his liking.

But no more! The excellent brainwave - so effectively taken up and promoted by Intelligentsiya and other freedom blogsites - to use May Day 2007 as an instrument of passive protest against Fiji's ruling illegal junta has put paid to such misgiving, or, more candidly, such pretensions.

So I hereby enthusiastically join the chorus: Go Fiji!

And in that spirit, May I share a few thoughts about the general significance of May?

Firstly, this May - Tuesday the 14th to be precise - will mark the 20th anniversary of Fiji's first coup. This will, of course, be an anniversary of dubious merit. On the one hand, it was a blow to a young democracy, but one from which we were able to recover pretty damned quickly.

On the other, it provided a paradigm that was to be adapted for their own opportunistic motives by egotistic rat-bags from the lunatic fringe such as George Speight and Voreqe Bainimarama.

Secondly, who recalls that lovely children's song "Here we go gathering nuts in May?" No, it's not a song about collecting nuts of either the botanical or human - think dictators - variety. "Nuts" is a corruption of "knots", which means "bunches", in this case - bunches of flowers.

So, to enhance the beauty and peacefulness of your passive protest this Tuesday, why not use part of the day to gather some flowers? And while you're doing that you might like to silently pray to God that there'll be no need for a similar observance in 12 months' time.

If that transpires - and I am praying it won't - then I respectfully suggest we drop the idea of using May Day as a peaceful protest. Instead, as a nation, we should shout in unison: "Mayday! Mayday! Mayday!"...and hope to hell that someone out there hears us.

April 25, 2007

Some thoughts from Micheal Field...

By Michael Field

One morning around 18 months ago I was standing atop a drought-blighted hillside graveyard. The Fiji national anthem was played at one point, which was distinctly strange because this assembly of martyrs was outside Harare in the cursed African nation of Zimbabwe. Perhaps the bandmaster liked the tune, but most of the people there were, for survival’s sake, blindly loyal to one nearby man; Robert Mugabe. He gave a rambling speech about the glories of his liberation wars and went on about how the world did not understand Zimbabwe and its traditional ways. You feel physically ill when in the presence of such diatribes; what you see with your own eyes makes a complete mockery of the words. Mugabe is 83 years old; the life expectancy of ordinary Zimbabweans is just 33. He’s consuming his own people in pursuit of immortality.

Now for the benefit of Fiji’s current rulers – whose restricted intellects can be seen from the fact that if they had thought for a minute, they wouldn’t have staged a coup at all – I do not equate Fiji with Zimbabwe. Nature has been very cruel, of late, to Zimbabwe; she has always been generous to Fiji. It’s merely its citizens who make a mess of it.

Still, some accidental parallels are present. Mugabe’s thugs were running Operation Murambatsvina, aimed at driving opposition supporters out of the pathetic squatter camps they were obliged to live in. Over 700,000 people lost their homes. The translation of Murambatsvina is “clean up”. Voreqe Bainimarama shares Mugabe’s clean up fetish.

What made me think of the anxious morning on Zimbabwe’s Heroes Acre was listening to Colonel Pita Driti’s April 12 speech at Queen Elizabeth Barracks (QEB). It sounded the same xenophobic rant. Driti later seemed to realise that he’d removed his own big toe with his shots. He also demonstrated vividly his personal ambitions to take power. Is he the next Shane Stevens? That he is part of the Murambatsvina Triumvirate is odd; am I the only one to remember his distinctly ambiguous behaviour during George Speight’s coup. That he did not end up in Nukulau is a tribute to his craftiness; or quiet recognition that he leads a significant and dangerous clique within the Republic of the Fiji Military Force (RFMF). Coup V or VI is going to come from him. Some one other than Ilisoni Ligairi turned the 1st Pacific Meridian Squadron aka the Counter Revolutionary Warfare Unit from a specialist defender of democracy to an enemy of it. That person is still in the RFMF and don’t imagine for a moment the new anti-corruption squad will go after him.

Whatever virus Driti had was catchy because Bainimarama was also foot-shooting under the guise of a war on Washington (Please, some one, lend him a copy of Peter Seller’s “The Mouse that Roared” – just to lighten things).

So, why am I now writing my own invitation to a re-education session at QEB? One reason is the fate a couple of contacts in Suva. One used to be outspoken but had a QEB conference session and is now a quiet little mouse. Remember “One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest”; military lobotomy and all is quiet. Another was always good for coffee, including the day before Murambatsvina. Righteous outrage followed but then something happened; the coup turned out to be aimed, not at clean up, but at indigenous rule.

This too is a post humorous tribute to Robert Keith-Reid. Way back in 1987 he was hauled up to QEB for a severe thrashing in the name of Sitiveni Rabuka. He used to speak of it later, with a kind of shudder, but unlike the current generation of pussy cats, it did not shut him up. He was angry and outspoken right up until his death during the elections last year. The first time he went back into QEB after 1987 was in 2000 to witnesses Bainimarama announce his First Coming as the Saviour of Fiji.

I’ve also some obligation thanks to “Speight of Violence; Inside Fiji’s 2000 coup” which I wrote with former Foreign Minister Tupeni Baba and his academic wife Unaisi Nabobo-Baba. As anybody who has read it will realise, I carried most of the narrative and expressed most of the opinions over what the coup was about. The Babas wrote personal accounts, one as a hostage, the other as a waiting wife. In the book I wrote Fiji had not confronted the real lessons of 2000. Because of this, I wrote two years ago, Fiji, would quickly suffer another coup.

It had been a good exercise in writing a history of an event a couple of years on; the trivial and the significant become re-arranged.

Now it can be argued that 2000 real coup was not when Speight and whoever else he had in his band overthrew the always venal Mahendra Chaudhry on May 19, 2000 (one can only speculate on whether the family scrapbook containing all his statements on the importance of democracy made in 1999-2000 are being kept). It wasn’t Speight who ultimately kept Chaudhry out of office after he got his freedom. It was not Laisenia Qarase. The man who usurped power in 2000 was Bainimarama.

Perhaps this was why he was always so angry with Lieutenant Colonel Filipo Tarakinikini. Was the handsome hill tribesman really in on the first Bainimarama coup - only they fell out in a battle for the spoils. Tarakinikini is Fiji’s Molotov; in perpetual exile waiting for an ice pick. Driti was with the other coup.

May 2000 had nothing much to do with Speight at all; the bald one was an opportunist who dropped the ball. Bainimarama did too, but he eventually got rid of those who blocked him.
What his actions underscore too is the danger implicit in the RFMF’s existence. In its entire lifetime it has not driven off one foreign enemy. It has not fought one single battle in its own right in its existence. Its only combat was as part of a New Zealand force in the Solomons and while their endeavours there were heroic, they were not influential or particularly outstanding. They were not called upon again to fight after the Solomons. For much of their life too they have been a a racially based force; a matter of shame they have yet to recognise.
Their peacekeeping work is no doubt worthy, but lets make it clear here. Nations provide soldiers for such duties for one of two reasons; because they believe in being good global citizens (in which case the go along with the global rules), or they need the money. Fiji rejects democracy and it is obvious that they are soldiering, not for a cause, but for the money. Fiji soldiers are the girmit to the world’s messed up zones.

It’s a complete myth too that Fiji makes money out of war-whoring. The UN pays for some of it, but raising soldiers is still a net cost to Fiji. Putting soldiers into Lebanon, or Croatia or Iraq means Fiji’s hospitals do not have the services they would otherwise have. Soldiers in Baghdad mean Vanua Levu’s schools do not have books, much less computers. And imagine the clean and reliable water the people of Suva could have if the soldier’s money was spent on pipes. Soldiers – any soldiers in any nation – are a drain, dead or alive. Fiji’s fascination with soldiering is a costly adolescent boy fantasy. They have, on more than one occasion, systematically wrecked Fiji’s economy. They cost a fortune and every so often they stage coups, usually just after the hard pressed civilians have got the GDP moving back into positive territory.

Just imagine if Fiji had no army! Perhaps Tonga might have invaded Lau, and Tuvalu might have plundered Rotuma. A lot of money could have been saved though; Fiji could have made it as a First World nation. The truth that Fiji’s people need to understand is that no one is planning to invade Fiji and if they were there are easier ways to do it. Foreign invaders could just take over Fiji’s banks, fast food joints and cinemas. And some supermarkets and the odd island or two; Waikuya for example, or Turtle Island. But, of course, Fiji would never let foreigners take over like that?

And what an incredible joke Fiji and the UN are now playing. They are off to Baghdad to help in the no doubt noble venture of keeping warring Muslim factions from destroying each other. Meanwhile back in Fiji various Sunnis are actually filing in the previously elected posts around the place. It has a kind of manic madness about it all.

Epeli Ganilau (seeing the cohorts have scrapped the GCC the “Ratu” business can now be skipped) gave a press conference last December just after the coup. In the elections earlier in the year his cobbled together political party had won no seats and few preferences. It was worse; no one could remember what it was that his party even stood for. But packed into his pokey little office near Marist he told us all we had to accept reality, roll over and surrender. Help the new order, he said. He was duly rewarded with a military burble in a cabinet no one recognises. I was struck with the way a former military commander simply surrendered like that. He just gave up (unless, of course, he was part of the coup – but he denies it). Gosh, he said, the odds are too bad, let us drop our arms and bend over. The RFMF has only one significant bravery award to its ranks; that granted Sefanaia Sukanaivalu who was killed trying to fight the inevitable, but was cut down in a heroic defence against impossible odds. Ganilau would define Sukanaivalu was a misguided fool. Surrender, not glory, is his order.

The leadership of Zimbabwe, like those who have claimed Fiji’s leadership, are given to exclaiming that the world does not understand them. And that the world should leave them alone, although some of money from those who don’t understand would be welcome. Bainimarama and cohorts might want to consider something else: the world does understand what is going on in Fiji. The world does not like it. So long as Fiji wants to help itself the money of other taxpayers, it comes with conditions attached (oh, and Fiji’s need for foreign, tainted cash would virtually disappear it it did not have to pay for the RFMF each year).

What Bainimarama has not got – and a lot of Fiji’s people seem to have failed to get a grip on – is that the world is simply not going to accept his rule. He can huff and puff as much as he likes but in the end, small countries are obliged to accept global rules. Some go their own way; North Korean and Zimbabwe for example. Its One World Frank; not One World and Fiji!
The global order – with its increasing acceptance of democratic rule (and yes, China is not but who can make it conform to that particular rule) – is actually to the benefit of countries like Fiji. This though is not an argument for globalisation or multilateralism; its much more brutally pragmatic than that. Bainimarama might escape prosecution in a Fiji court, but he’s doomed on the global stage where he cuts absolutely no ice. He can strut Mussolini-like for a while for local consumption, but in the end he will realise – as he must – that his triumph is pure mirage. What the Pacific Forum, the Commonwealth, the UN and the neighbours want, they will get. It is an inevitability. The only question is how much damage he and the RFMF will do before the light goes on in their heads.

Have no doubt here, the damage being inflicted to the people of Fiji, by the people of Fiji, is substantial and long term. A slide in GDP might sound strangely academic to most but the reality it translates into is poverty, disease and failure.

Bainimarama launched his second coup (his first was in 2000) differently this time, saying he wanted to end the coup culture. It is up there with the never to be forgotten Vietnam military expression, destroying a village to save it.

Fiji is heading to another coup; the only person who can head it off now is none other than Bainimarama himself.


We hear you!

Many of us bloggers are united on the 1st May PROTEST. We take a moment to be explicitly clear that it this is a call for you to protest the illegalities of this junta based on your individual choice and your individual free will. Two things that are sorely missing from their reign.

If you feel for what and where this country is heading then make your stand. It's as simple as that.

We are not calling for a strike. We have no legal mandate to call for a strike and there are a myriad of processes that are required before a strike can take place.

In addition this is not a call made by FijianBlack but by most of the pro-democracy bloggers. Take a quick tour to confirm this for yourselves.

However Mr Leweni launched a witch-hunt on for the blogger FijianBlack. And in true "foot in mouth" fashion he has shown the UN team the extent of what this junta will do to curb any opposition.

At the same time we express our concerns about the naughty reporting by Fiji Live wrongly advising protestors to wear black. No where on the blogs are we suggesting that. Why would we advocate that a peaceful protest intentionally single people out for easy visible pickings by the Junta?

Now Mr Leweni see's the error of his ways in an afternoon statement and throws the gauntlet down. It's up to you the People of Fiji to prove them right or wrong.

Anyway here's our Media Statement in response to that:


Media Release

Suva, Fiji Islands, April 25th, 2007.

FIJIAN BLACK is the blognym for the blogsite Good Men (and Women) Doing Something (goodmenandwomendoingsomething.blogspot.com) and is calling on the public of Fiji to passively resist the interim regime, by staying home on Tuesday, 1st of May, 2007.

FijianBlack is calling on all sons and daughters of Fiji, to stay home, as a sign of opposition to this regime and rejects the terror tactics being openly touted by Neumi Leweni’s statement on Fiji Village.

"The coup culture is alive in Fiji, because we have not done anything about it" he says. "We need to be more pro-active in defending our democracy, our rights and the future of Fiji. If we don't, this is a forlorn legacy we are bequeathing to our children"

Intelligentsiya (intelligentsiya.blogspot.com) who is also a member of the Fiji Freedom Bloggers movement is also calling on the military, the Interim Government and the other arms of Government to focus on the more important issues, like the restoration of democracy, the investigation of the numerous Human Rights abuses, and the removal of the military from all levels of Government.

"The military, which was once a proud institution, loved in Fiji and respected around the world has in the past few months completely and utterly morphed into a dictatorial, ruthless regime, that is not motivated by a patriotic love of our country, but by greed, the self-serving interests of a few, fear and insecurity. It is a sad state of affairs when the army of a nation needs its guns to protect itself against it's own citizens. It is a sorry sight to see the once proud green uniforms that have brought glory to Fiji, causing fear, resentment and concern amongst the people of this nation” said Intelligentsiya.

"The military has usurped power, it has assumed mantles of various institutions that it was and never will be, suited to exercise. It has taken a situation that was none of their concern, the state of our economy, and has made it infinitely worse."

Fijian Black calls on the Republic of Fiji Military Forces, and the Interim Regime, to respect Human Rights, the will of the people, and the opinions of the citizens of Fiji.

"If the military had not intervened, we would have the $350 million in aid and our sugar reforms would have been under way. The Tourism industry would be booming, the job losses in the hotels would not have happened, the visitors would be flocking to our shores. We would not have a negative GDP, and an economy that seriously needs an infusion of aid. We would have new hotels opening this year, happier landowners, more exports, higher levels of foreign reserves and a nation on its way up in the world.

Mrs. Verebasaga would still have her husband, and the father of their children, and their breadwinner.

Sakiusa Rabaka would be studying, aiming for a job in the very industry that the travel advisories, based on the actions of this regime, have decimated.

We would still be abiding by the 1997 Constitution, in word and deed.

Now our nation is in shambles. At the time the investigative powers of our Forces should be pursuing the murderers of Messers Verebasaga and Rabaka, they are more concerned about stemming any opposition to their cause.”

The Fiji Freedom bloggers movement is in itself tangible evidence that the right to freedom of expression has been unjustly curbed under the insidious guise of the Emergency Regulations.

Fijian Black said “Fiji Live has also reported our call wrongly. We are not calling on people to wear black as that would only cause them to be singled out by this junta but just to protest peacefully by staying at home”.


Contact: fijianblack@gmail.com; mawdsomething@gmail.com; intelligentsiya@gmail.com

ABC News Update...Fiji: Activists organise stay-at-home protest

A novel protest against Fiji's military-installed interim government is being planned - and it doesn't require people to do any work. In fact, that's the entire point of the May Day protest. It is calling on Fiji citizens opposed to the rule of Frank Bainimarama to stay away from work next Tuesday, the first of May. The action is the brainchild of an informal network of cyber-activists known as the Fiji Freedom Bloggers. One of them, a blogger whose site is "Good Men and Women Doing Something", and who wishes to remain anonymous, preferring to be known only as "Fijian Black", explains the concept to Bruce Hill.


April 22, 2007

Join the resistance? Yes you can! Stay home on May Day…

May 1 around the world is usually a day to commemorate the working class, among other causes and events.

The date has also become a day on which anarchists and socialists stamp their mark “and in these circles it is often known as International Workers’ Day or labour day. In this form, May Day has become an international celebration of the social and economic achievements of the working class and labor movement.” (Wikipedia)

In the spirit of non-violent resistance to the violent removal of our freedoms, the Freedom Bloggers have initiated a “National Day of Inaction” – Labour Day, May Day – May 1, 2007.

You may have had your public voice taken away and uncertainty in all areas of your lives but it is by not going to work on May Day that you can peacefully show your resistance to this military junta.

Fiji’s public sector unions should not betray the ideals of Labour Day and push on with their plan to stage strikes.

You may think that you staying at home on May 1 will not make a difference, but imagine if thousands of others did the same thing. The effect will be to show this junta that they don’t have the support of the majority of common people - support and legitimacy that they claim to have.

Yes we want to move forward, but how can we when we are bound up by fear and intimidation imposed on us by the military and its junta? Remember the words of White Rose, a small group of university students who bravely published pamphlets during the Nazi terror in Germany calling on citizens to act against Hitler and his cohorts: "Do not forget that every people deserves the regime it is willing to endure."

You can have your say in the running of this country despite elections being some time away – and May Day is the first way to do it.

In many ways, you will have the support of the rest of the world’s workers as thousands elsewhere around the global take action on this day.

As Mahatma Ghandi once said, “For the non-violent person, the whole world is one family. He will thus fear none, nor will others fear him.”

Courtesy of the Propoganda Ministry...

Well, ok, it's not "actual" propaganda from the military junta. But the Freedom Bloggers couldn't help themselves in spelling out to you how self-proclaimed prime minister Commodore Frank Bainimarama expects to rule (with an iron fist?) unless ordinary citizens stand up for themselves and stop this travesty before it escalates any further.

(Thanks to fellow Freedom Blogger, Discombobulated Bubu for this.)

April 20, 2007

With tails between their legs...

We heard yelps reverberating from Government Buildings from here.

Yup that's right folks. The yelps similar to a dog that is running with its tails firmly stuck between it's legs. What is the reason you may ask?

The reason is because after all that alpha-male strutting in the media by Frank, Driti and even Teleni telling the USA who really owned Loftus Street, all it took was a meeting between Larry Dinger and Frank to resolve who REALLY the alpha-male was.

Driti folded first and then Frank folded himself into origamic submission.

But the international pressure is indeed rolling out day after day. YAHOOO to the EU for sticking to its "Cotonou" guns.

As for the FHRC's Shameem, we say just give it up because the whole world (including the EU) knows how deeply entrenched your hands are in this mess no matter what you say now.

Regionally our eyes are still firmly on USP as a CROP Agency to do good by their leaders directives.

However the external pressure can only do so much. It's time for you, yes you, the person reading this blog who lives here in Fiji to take action if you truly want Fiji back from the illegal hands of this military junta.

The Fiji Law Society have begun by lodging documents for a Judicial Review of the purported meeting of the Judicial Services Commission on 15 January 2007 but the REAL POWER is in your hands.

We've talked about making your money really work for you and while we hear your comments we make our position clear now. Intelligentsiya is a firm advocate of Passive Resistance. Fiji should never suffer collatoral damage and passive resistance does work!

So join the 1 May stay-at-home day as a sign of your resistance to this junta.

In addition there are 2 other things you can do:

a) Do not support the unbranded "help em wantok" event scheduled for tomorrow at the foreshore. Yes we feel for our wantoks but this is another insidious attempt by the junta to use a tragedy to prove that they have legitimacy. If you want to help our wantoks contact the Solomon Islands government directly. Do not trust your hard-earned dollars to middle-men who will use the PR to tell the world that we support them.

b) Boycott "Suva on Sale". Save your money as there are going to be leaner times ahead that is undoubted. If Himmat Lodhia and the retailers association want the armed check-points back and don't respect your views on a quick return to democracy then they can very well do without your $$$.

It's that simple folks and remember the infamous words of Ryunosuke Satoro: “Individually, we are one drop. Together, we are an ocean.”

Together we will be the cataclysmic tide that sweeps this Junta right out of power with their tails between their legs.

April 19, 2007

Another legal opinion that judiciary on shaky ground

If you needed further assurance of the ever-increasing shaky legal ground our judiciary is currently on, a new legal opinion has emerged that confirms the illegality of the appointment of Justice Anthony Gates as Chief Justice.

This time the opinion is from James Dingermans QC, the man who was leading counsel to the Hutton Inquiry into the death of UK Government scientist Dr David Kelly in 2003. He specialises in constitutional law and was assisted by his 3 Hare Court colleague James Hawkins in drawing up the opinion.

In short, they say that the Judicial Services Commission which met on January 15, 2007 was unconstitutional and that the appointment of Justice Gates at that meeting, therefore, was illegal.

Download the opinion here.

April 17, 2007

There is no evil, just stupidity?

Dr John Cameron,
Special to Intelligentsiya

It is a long way back to base in Perth, Western Australia from Suva: first, 3242 km to Sydney and another 3283 km clear across Australia. I have done it a dozen times in the last year or so, and it is a very long ride.

On my last trip I killed time reading Perfect Hostage, A Life of Aung San Suu Kyi by Justin Wintle.

For those who are not familiar with her story, Suu Kyi (pronounced Sue Chee) was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991, but was unable to be present in Oslo/Stockholm to accept it in person. Since 1988 she has steadily opposed Burma’s brutal military regime, instituted by General Ne Win in 1962.

She left her comfortable life as the wife of an Oxford academic, and mother of two sons, to lead the political opposition to that regime. First placed under house arrest in 1989, she is again under house arrest, which this time appears to be permanent. Since her return to Burma (renamed Myanmar by the junta) from the United Kingdom, she has faced constant physical and psychological harassment.

In 2003, during an attempt on her life, she witnessed the massacre of scores of her followers. Neither the separation from her husband, who died of cancer in 1999, nor the separation from her two sons, presently forbidden from visiting her, has deflected her from the principled path to democracy which she has chosen as her own.

I was struck by a quotation from Suu Kyi, whom I have long admired, at the opening of the first chapter. She is quoted as saying:
I do not think there is a word for evil in Buddhism. I think this is something you must ask real Buddhist scholars. But we speak of ill will, we speak of ignorance, we speak of greed, but we don’t speak of evil as such. There is no evil, just stupidity.
Perhaps the Buddhist approach provides a better explanation of Fiji’s afflictions than others such as Christian doctrine: stupidity, rather than evil as the product of sin.

Further into his account, her biographer writes:
She might so easily have said: ‘I’ve given it my best shot, there’s nothing more I can do in Burma. I’m going home to Oxford, to look after my children and my husband and pursue my academic interests.’ Guilt would have pursued her for a while perhaps, but not for ever. The world is full of people who have stepped away, and the human psyche is adept at rationalising its activities.
He continues:
But Aung San Suu Kyi is made of sterner stuff.
For myself the most dispiriting feature emerging from the events since December 5 is not the manifest stupidity and incompetence of those responsible for them, repeated daily, but rather the ease with which those who might have been expected to oppose them have stepped aside, and the superficial ingenuity with which they have justified the sacrifice of principle to self-interest.

The most egregious examples come from my own profession, and I include the judiciary. The mainstream print media, with their self-serving self-censorship, come a close second.
Suu Kyi’s biographer concludes:
What needs to be acknowledged, and continuously applauded, is Aung San Suu Kyi’s phenomenal ability to inspire others, not just in Burma, where her presence has underpinned the democracy movement since August 1988, but around the world. Without her kind, we are all impoverished.

In the Manichaean scheme of things, which sees the human condition as a permanent contest between good and bad, virtue and decay, and which every culture in one way or another subscribes, her significance reaches far beyond one beleaguered South-East Asian nation. Never let go of hope.
But the question is asked on the cover of this biography: Is Suu Kyi’s insistence on non-violence really best calculated to bring down a junta incapable of acting in good faith? That is a question no more readily answered in relation to Burma than it is in Fiji.

Perhaps the difference between the two situations lies in the fact that in Fiji we still have the remnants of an independent judiciary.

We do not have the guns, but we do have the law.

If only we had more lawyers and victims with the courage to use it.

  • Dr John Cameron is a lawyer who has practised in Fiji, Australia and New Zealand. His clients have included the late Dr Timoci Bavadra and the wives of parliamentarians detained in 1987.

Let’s talk about money…your’s and our’s.

OK we’ve had enough of this junta but our options are limited and we just have to go with the flow RIGHT? Wrong.

Himmat Lodhia's statements REQUESTING armed military check-points back really got us hopping mad. National security is the role ONLY for our police. There are no if’s and but’s about it.

However we were fortunate enough to come by the words of Boétie and that got us thinking:

“Even so tyrants…the more is given them, the more they are obeyed, so much the more do they fortify themselves, become stronger and more able to annihilate and destroy. If nothing be given them, if they be not obeyed, without fighting, without striking a blow, they remain naked, disarmed and are nothing—like as the root of a tree, receiving no moisture or nourishment, becomes dry and dead.”
Etienne de la Boétie, 1577

So we share our thoughts with you.

How badly do YOU want your civil liberties back?
How sick are you of the pathetic leadership being forced upon you?
Do you feel strongly about how this junta is taking our country backwards and not forward as is being constantly parroted (but not felt)?
Would you like to see an end to the human rights violations and the environment of uncertainty and fear?
Would you like to rattle this junta without the risk of being taken for the free exercise session up at Delainabua?

Then let’s talk about how we can make an impact.

Money makes the world go around. We know this. Month after month we part with money via taxes which this dictatorship is currently spending like there’s no tomorrow (did you believe the 4 full paged propaganda in a Saturday Fiji Times edition 14th April costing a pretty penny from our hard-earned taxes?) despite the reality that the economy is in the toilet.

All is not lost. With the few dollars left over from the sweat of our collective brows we still have full rights and full control over where we as consumers CHOOSE to purchase our required goods and services.

It’s time to make YOUR purchasing power come alive and work for you.

We know there are businesses in cahoots with this junta. We also know there are business interests of those within the ranks of this dictatorship. For whatever reasons they could ever think of to support an illegal take-over it’s time to hit them where it hurts i.e. in THEIR pockets using YOUR money.

As a measure of caution should we be falling into the trap of placing so much emphasis on the courts to decide whether the coup was illegal or not?? If one can read and has a conscience it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that what Frank did on 5/12 was clearly against the law. Let’s think carefully about growing the litigation culture (can you believe all the costly QC’s flocking to this country?) that you and I will inevitably pay for (we are the already cash-strapped innocent bystanders here folks!) and that a country like Fiji is not ready to sustain!

There can be NO excuses for Frank and cronies’ illegal acts that even Mosmi Bhim, Victor Lal, Thakurji, Kevin Barr, Shukhdev Shah etc etc could EVER hope to academically gloss over. As a by the way, we hope that the council meeting of the University of the South Pacific next month is taking notes about how insidious the cover of “academic freedom” is being used to academically justify illegal acts such as this coup (what next, lab sessions on how to construct a bomb in the interest of science?).

The USP Council and donors must be clear that USP academics have been entrusted and well paid to groom future leaders of the Pacific. As a regional CROP agency the University is bound by the firm stand (and definition) on democracy of Pacific Island Forum leaders who “own” this learning institution. Any alternate views on democracy are more appropriate in Russia and seeing as the Russians were just here to observe (and comment on) our recent budget announcement these types of academics are better off asking Mahend to broker teaching opportunities there.

Back to the blog topic. If you are interested in this initiative post up your comments to signal your thoughts about this strategy.

Our future as a country, as a generation (this and the futures) and as a citizenry depends on what we as a peoples put our minds towards achieving en masse.

We will move Fiji forward legally and safely on we the peoples terms. Not the junta’s.

April 14, 2007

Legal team’s report points to worrying signs in judiciary

LAWASIA, the professional association of representatives of bar councils, law associations, individual lawyers, law firms and corporations principally from the Asia Pacific region, has released the report of its Observer Mission to Fiji from March 25-28.

Intelligentsiya received a copy of the LAWASIA report published on Thursday, April 12. Dowload a copy of the LAWASIA report here.

The report compiled by a four-member team led by Mah Weng Kwai, president of LAWASIA and former president of the Malaysian Bar, looks at the split within the judiciary that started in 2000 during George Speight’s rebellion and further widened after the military coup last December with the removal of Chief Justice Daniel Fatiaki.

One of the conclusions of the 20-page report is that “the rule of law in Fiji may be compromised by the ongoing uncertainty as to the status and future of suspended Chief Justice Fatiaki and by the ongoing public perception, right or wrong, that the judiciary is politicised and divided.”

Other points the report makes, include:

  • The ongoing uncertainty regarding the constitutionality of the Judicial Service Commission has another unfortunate consequence. The LAWASIA Observer Mission was told that up to nine overseas Court of Appeal/Supreme Court judges may not seek reappointment on the grounds that they would object to the current constitution of the Judicial Service Commission or else are uncomfortable with the uncertainty of the lawfulness of its decisions. This may lead to attrition which in turn might ultimately resolve the present factionalism, but this would be an unfortunate scenario. It would fail to confront and address many of the issues which give rise to scepticism amongst members of the legal profession and the public at large. If forced attrition is the mechanism adopted to produce harmony within the judiciary, deep divisions will remain amongst the community and the national and international legal profession, and any gains may prove to be short-lived.
  • Whilst doubts linger, the Acting Chief Justice remains in an unenviable position and any actions performed by him in his capacity as Acting Chief Justice will remain under the shadow of possible future challenge. This, again, points to the importance of resolving the status of Chief Justice Fatiaki as soon as possible.
  • The LAWASIA Observer Mission believes that the Tribunal's (proposed to inquire into the allegations of corruption in the judiciary) terms of reference should be expanded to include an examination of the conduct of the entire Fiji judiciary. In making this observation, the Mission is not challenging the character or integrity of any individual members of the judiciary. It cannot help but note, however, that a number of senior judges themselves hold overtly hostile and publicly documented views about other judges, with allegations and counter-allegations of inappropriate behaviour.
  • Perhaps the time has come for these matters to be formally and independently assessed and for appropriate action to be taken, on the basis of that assessment, to restore a fitting level of collegiality and dignity to the working environment. If it were considered that the Tribunal would be an inappropriate forum for such an inquiry, a special independent inquiry might be a suitable alternative mechanism.
  • There is overt disharmony within the Fiji judiciary. The origins of this disharmony clearly date back to 2000. Time has not healed any philosophical divide within the judiciary – indeed, as recent events have shown, time has exacerbated the problem, or at least the perception.
  • A diversity of opinions, divergent political affiliations and differing philosophies are generally healthy elements of any working environment, including the judiciary. The situation in Fiji has, however, seemingly exceeded the bounds of tolerance in this regard, leading to a potentially dysfunctional situation.
  • It is not satisfactory if the current divisions are resolved solely on the basis of attrition and boycott. Lingering suspicion, resentment and innuendo within the community – including the local and international legal community – will continue to undermine the remaining members of the judiciary and the work of the courts unless a formal and independent enquiry has once and for all assessed the issues, commented on the divisions and expressed confidence that whichever judges continue to serve are untainted by political or personal agendas and are capable of continuing to serve in a collegiate and dignified environment.
Download a copy of the LAWASIA report here.

April 13, 2007

If the shoe fits...

Some thoughts from our contributor CASSANDRA:

One day the running shoes could be on the other foot.

While gleefully yelling "I told you so!" does not become a gentleman, your otherwise mild-mannered correspondent is definitely not gentlemanly when it comes to his hate and loathing of the Bainimarama junta's theft of Fiji's modest prosperity, political integrity and international reputation.

Specifically, just on one month ago in an article published by Intelligentsiya I warned that the European Union was not going to cough up the desperately needed $350-million sugar restructure. According to that esteemed journal, Fiji Business News, your correspondent was right on the money, so to speak.

But that's not the only reason I have for being exultant about my undoubted sagacity.

More recently, Intelligentsiya carried my piece in which I put the proposition that the Commodore was a few bananas short of a decent picnic. If anyone doubted this admittedly crude diagnosis; they didn't have to wait long for hard evidence.

No sooner did my piece enter cyberspace than the dictator himself obligingly demonstrated its truth. I am referring to his reported utterances to the American Ambassador about running shoes.

Now, I ask you: what sort of lunatic carries on like that?

Well, I'll tell you. That's the behaviour of a lunatic who knows he's protected by guns and troops.

Which leads me to pose a question: what would happen if, by some stroke of divine intervention, those guns and troops were no longer available to this particular lunatic?

It would be one Voreqe Bainimarama who would be in desparate need of his Reeboks.

Flurrying and Scurrying in the Diplomatic Corners

Yo, yo, yo people!!!!

What's with all the hustle and bustle at the SCC Office?? Have some "orders" been handed down by the junta to remove the road barriers at Gladstone Rd and Loftus St in response to Driti's idiotic, uncouth and deflective sentiments yesterday aimed at the governments of Australia, USA and UK???

NOT a good move folks!

This is just getting started it seems and GOOD ONE Frank -- you've essentially shut Fiji's door to the EU with your equally idiotic words yesterday.

Oh and not to mention rattled the constitutionally recognised body of the GCC and technically put the Pres. "on notice" -- or did you forget that he is the representative of the GCC??

Sorry but I got to say it man! Frank and Junta are CLUELESS and it shows.

April 11, 2007

Value for money?

Oilelei ra makabuqu…Sorry for the absence – what with the Easter holidays and the Fiji Sevens win in Adelaide. But back to business, the nation awaits with bated breath for the announcement by the GCC on the appointment of the Vice President. While we pray that the grapevine “nomination” remain as rumours I hold on to hope everlasting that I will be disappointed. In the pit of my stomach I know I will be disappointed as the politicking of members vs non-members has begun.

But your old Bu Josi’s own ticker has been doing the roller-coaster in recent days. From the tragic tsunami in Gizo, to the snap cyclone here on our turf to the heart-attack-invoking 7s triumph in Adelaide – mate nai lavo at the Adelaide 7s! What a turn of events and emotions!

But despite these events it will take much, much more than that to turn old Bu Josi’s attention away from the happenings here.

Let’s focus today on the junta’s Mahendra Chaudhry and his efforts in managing our coffers. So he’s managed to turn the hearts of the government of India by helping out with our natural disasters. Now the Indian government has extended that help to better trade links and possibly judges and army training. Very peculiar indeed makabuna’s.

It is odd because the Indian government maintains it will not impose sanctions because of our long history. History is one thing but aid that develops our country is another and frankly the Indian government cannot even begin to compare to what Australia and New Zealand contribute to this country. It is also odd that India as a member of the Commonwealth is not toeing the party line.

The proposed injection via a loan from the Exim Bank of India towards the sugar industry reform last year, we must not forget has its ties to some brokering from the FLP-folk (who could forget the much publicised falling out between Chaudhry and Anand Singh over that matter?)

However makabuqu’s all is not so sweet within the sugar industry itself. As the invasion of FLP candidates comes to the fore and news of a $6.4m loan obtained by the Sugar Cane Growers Council chairman two weeks ago without board approval will see farmers with a noose to the tune of approximately $100K in loan repayments hanging around their necks. What a hefty sum like that is doing floating around the sector must surely be tied to the rejuvenation of the industry reform process that fell apart after 5/12.

Of interest is the revelation by a fellow blog-site highlighting how the FLP hopes to dupe the EU. Nice try ragone but don’t think that the EU is oblivious to all the underhand drama. We know that they have got their fingers firmly on the pulse of this nation.

That’s not all ragone. The Asian continents are falling over themselves to come to our rescue. We are told that last week Chinese officials were doing the rounds of closed-door meetings with certain members of this junta namely Chaudhry, Taito Waradi and Ratu Epeli Ganilau. And of course Taiwan, never wishing to be outdone, are doing their thing all over the Pacific .

If the junta is depending on the ADB to bail them out it might like to see who really holds power in this multilateral financial institution.

But back to Chaudhry. Let us turn to a very clandestine and almost sinister “Robin Hood” move promoted by the king-of-robbing-from-the-rich-to-“help”-the-poor. Yes that’s right ra makabuqu the suggested increase in departure tax due to come into effect from May. Now ragone, if our tourism arrival numbers are already sluggish a carrot like this may seem good for the country. But is it good for our visitors who can use their purchasing power (even if it is only $10 but doesn’t everybody want value for money these days?) at more attractive (and cheaper) destinations like Bali.

Therefore we slap on a $10 levy on visitors and outbound internal travellers which this illegal government with no accountability can run amok with? Hardly an attractive marketing tactic, is it ra makabuqu? Not even the best marketing efforts by na makabuqu Bill Gavoka can sell this sham. If the junta are timing this increase for the international tourism meet to be held at the plush Sheraton resort next month in which to make their margins, it does nothing about the core barrier to tourism - that of travel advisories from our core tourism clients which will not be lifted until elections take place soon. Unless of course we pin our hopes on an influx of starlets from Bollywood.

But heck with the Indian rupee needing to work harder (1 FJD = 26.1181 INR) to match the Fiji dollar, those kinds of visitors will be few and far between. Even then they will presumably only come to do concerts and trade shows which will be paid for by the people of Fiji down the line.

I pause for a moment here to make mention of His Excellency the President who is to approve this. Isa Ratu Iloilo e na yalo ni veidokai au kerea mo nanumi Viti and think deeply about what it is you are signing away. A thousand curses to those who choose to hood-wink you continuously in this manner.

Ok, a quick word about army training. So if India gives us this training and Frank eagerly applauds the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon's firm stand on the UN continuing to use our men as peacekeepers while slamming Australia, New Zealand and the Commonwealth Secretariat in the same breathe AND the British Army has quiet pre-selection tests for potential recruits happening in the Western side, what does that tell us? I leave that to you to unravel because I’m still trying get my grey-haired head around it.

But most interesting are the recent divergent views of the Governor of the Reserve Bank Savenaca Narube and Chaudhry. Inflation is up and I did not need an economist to tell me that. I mean ra makabuqu, $10 doesn’t take an old lady like me very far every time I venture to buy kula or kerosene at the village sitoa.

Anyhow Chaudhry in true Mahend fashion continues to blame the previous government for all our economic woes yet as a recipient not too long ago of government expenditure (parliamentary “privileges”) he not once barked about getting more! More to the point though is that his solutions don’t seem convincing at all. Chaudhry proposes to tweak our legislation that improves internal money processes…isa lei…even in my twilight years I know there is not enough money floating around in the first place (apart from money from veiwekani overseas) in which to really move the economy. That kind of money only comes from foreign exchange via investment, exports and tourism. All of which are in trouble at the moment with no sign of “massaging” by the junta. So Mahend sa kua na lasu kerekere. Fiji is financially in the red and trust us, if/when we get a devaluation you can kiss your political career as a self-promoted money guru good-bye.

Let’s pause a while to focus on the CEO in the PM’s Office who gives life to the heads-up we alluded to earlier re: cyber crimes legislation. Parmesh Chand is also on the Dr Shaista Shameem band-wagon claiming that the Fiji Human Rights Commission independent report tells of unsafe ICT practices in government which has “privacy of information” implications. Well ra makabuqu mai keri you guys, you do what you have to do and we will do what we have to do. In the final analysis you are an illegal administration anyway so that should strike your claims out automatically. What’s most uncanny is that Parmesh refers to the final Canadian evaluation report BEFORE we the peoples were informed about it and we piece that together by comparing the dates of his media statement and the dates of the FHRC evaluation media statement…like my grandchildren say these days: “Duh! “

And by the way junta-folk we know about the newly appointed manager ITC named Salusalu who is an ex-navy boy of Franks recently returned from doing studies in Australia on IT hardware…good luck with tracking down bloggers with that “key” expertise. And even better wishes to you in your endeavour to actually enforce whatever legislation you are concocting. Did someone say GOPIO expertise??

But again back to Chaudhry. So he shows his eagerness in sinking his fangs into the Fiji Investment Corporation. Ok ragone so maybe there are questions about why a middle-man entity like that had to be formed in the first place but it does seem worrying that Chaudhry is intent on reviewing and reshaping it. Let’s hope we don’t see any Robin Hood tactics taking place there which do nothing for investor confidence. But let’s also remember that under the leadership of Parmesh as former CEO for public enterprise one of the state’s cash-cow of Post Fiji was supposed to come under the umbrella of FIC.

Oilei ra makabuqu, the “aahhh-aahhh man” Leweni joyously sings accapella the “you are confined to barracks” tune to Qarase. This junta just doesn't get it, do they? The more they flex publicly, the more the public evidence becomes stacked them in the SDL case. Even if the warnings are not public Qarase has to know what the verdict is and that becomes another affidavit. These poor sods are totally out of their depth here. Perhaps we should be asking whether we the people are getting value for money via Kiwi QC Gerald McCoy as we will inevitably have to somehow pay for this legal wrangling somewhere down the track.

We note the letter to editor in the Fiji Times penned by Akuila Yabaki yesterday. Kudos Rev for being consistent with that principled stand.

We also note Frank’s attempt at ‘playing the leader in his statement congratulating our boys for the Adelaide 7s Victory. Vosota makabuqu Frank, you do not have the mandate to speak on my behalf. We are all perfectly able to pass on our own congratulatory messages and we do that quite well via blogging!

Moce mada ra makabuqu. I am now all ranted out and I’m off to see how to stretch my $10 for more kula for my ibe! After that I will try out the Easter recipes from my sister Discombobulated Bubu …dou mai kana!