Ro Teimumu ready to lead SODELPA
From FIJI TIMES/PACNEWS
News Mon 24 Feb 2014
SUVA, Fiji — Having been in mainstream politics for five years, the Marama bale na Roko Tui Dreketi, Ro Teimumu Kepa, is ready to lead the Social Democratic and Liberal Party (SODELPA) if given the opportunity.
She told The Fiji Times she had applied to SODELPA to be the party leader.
“I also applied with others. The position will be announced on February 28,” Ro Teimumu said.
“I believe if you are applying for a certain position, you would be applying knowing that if the position is given to you, you are ready to serve in whatever capacity.”
She said the country only stood to benefit from leaders who provided for their people.
“I think the country is looking for leaders that they believe can provide a better future than what we have right now.”
Ro Teimumu said Fiji’s political arena had changed significantly as the majority of the voting public were youths.
“Now, it is not people who voted in the past. We are looking at young voters also.”
She said if given the opportunity to lead SODELPA, she would focus on the aspirations and dreams of the country’s women and youths.
“It is important to treat everyone equally.”
With lots of focus being put on women to enter politics, Ro Teimumu believes entering politics is not an easy task for women.
She said it would not be easy for women at a young age because they looked after their families, educated children and fed them. Ro Teimumu said the first priority for women was to look after their families.
Ro Teimumu said politics had a lot of risks for young women.
She said most women nowadays were either employed in the private or public sector which meant if they entered politics; they had to resign from their jobs and invest in campaigns.
Ro Teimumu said investing in politics was not an easy task as one had to resign from their job.
Meanwhile, the confidence of Australian Foreign Minister Julie Bishop that one-day election in Fiji is achievable is misplaced, says Labour leader Mahendra Chaudhary.
“One day polling requires massive organisational capacity and resources which the Elections Office will be unable to build in the short time before the polls,” Chaudhry said.
“We are now effectively less than six months from the promised elections. It should be noted that the Elections Office was mothballed for eight years.
“It will have to start from scratch to have all preparations in place for the one-day polls in September.”
Chaudhry said the Elections Office was still in the process of recruiting key staff to assist in the planning, organisation and management of the elections.
“After recruitment, they will have to undergo intensive and specialised training.
“We don’t have a Supervisor of Elections as yet who should take responsibility for the oversight of the election and the Elections Office.
“There is still no electoral legislation setting out the rules and guidelines for the elections. Political parties and the rest of the nation remain in the dark about how the polls will be conducted and the requirements governing it.”
Chaudhry said polling stations had not been finalised and he believes thousands of voters would not be able to get to polling stations on one-day polling.
Bishop told the Pacific Island Forum’s Ministerial Contact Group last week that while a single day election would be a monumental undertaking, Fiji was well capable of doing this.
She said that there were many things to consider when conducting an election in one day.
“We understand that the government wishes to hold an election on a single day and that hasn’t occurred before.”