Home » Uncategorized » NFP pledges to review Fiji’s media decree and enact information freedom law

NFP pledges to review Fiji’s media decree and enact information freedom law

NFP pledges to review Fiji’s media decree and enact information freedom law

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Pacific Scoop:
Report – By the Pacific Media Centre news desk

The leader of Fiji’s new National Federation Party, economist Professor Biman Prasad, has pledged to review the controversial media decree and pass a freedom of information law if it gains power in the September general election.

He has also called on Fijians to shed their fear and become involved in the election process.

“Our people are still afraid. Our youths are afraid. Our civil servants are afraid, our farmers are afraid, our women are afraid,” professor Prasad said in a speech at a party working meeting at Tamavua the weekend.

“Our businessmen are afraid. They are all afraid of participating actively in the campaign.”

Professor Prasad called on the Fiji government to “stop the threats, stop the victimisation, stop the intimidation of anyone – including media from participating and articulating their views” in the lead-up to the election.

“I call upon the people of this country and come out and be part of the election and campaign process.”

While the state privileges decree and the media decree remained in place, the 2014 general elections “cannot be free and fair – period”.

Heavy fines
“The media decree with its heavy fines and penalties make it impossible for the country’s journalists to cover issues openly and without fear. It makes it impossible for us to project our messages to our people.”

He praised the country’s journalists who “in spite of these harsh restrictions are doing their best to keep our citizens informed”.

“To these journalists, let me say a big vinaka vakalevu. The stakes have rarely been higher and weight on your shoulders so heavy.

“The national owes you its profound gratitude as you take real risks to help project our messages to Fiji citizens.”

Professor Prasad cited a paraphrased message from a regional media and elections training programme: “Freedom is when people can speak. Democracy is when government listens and the media is the messenger”.

He said the NFP did not fear the media.

“If the Bainimarama government has nothing to hide and if it has the moral courage to do the right thing, it should lift the media restrictions with immediate effect.

He said the NFP in government would “remove all of its unreasonable provisions including the fines and penalties”.
Professor Prasad also pledged to enact a Freedom of Information – “right to information” – bill.

“We no longer live in the dark ages where governments habitually kept secret, public information such as salaries paid to our leaders, and allowances they are paid on foreign junkets,” he said.

 

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12 thoughts on “NFP pledges to review Fiji’s media decree and enact information freedom law

  1. The people have no freedom of speech expect Bainimarma and Khayium. All the decrees must be removed as these are illegal which has no consent of the people.

  2. Our constitution does not allow reviewing and repealing of decrees that the Honourable Khaiyum has written. Who does Biman think he is? If he continues with this nonsense, we have no other choice than removing him from the race. He could have violated the crimes decree and it’s provisions which include 15 years jail for using a prostitute. I am not saying that he has, but if necessary we will find a girl who testifies that he did.

  3. My humble advice to you Biman is to first and foremost ensure that the proposed election is indeed free and fair and is not rigged and cunningly engineered to give Voreqe and Khaiyum’s party the win they so desperately want to legitimise their hold on power. Can you please kindly focus all your efforts to make sure that the election will be absolutely fair and conducted in a manner that will ensure that the people of Fiji will freely choose their leaders to lead them out of this dictatorship into a free and democratic society. Vinaka.

  4. Tomasi, your statement seems to suggest that others outside of the current illegal Govt have the power to “make sure that the election will be absolutely fair…” Only the Illegal Govt has to power to institute processes to ensure a free election, and they have not done so. They process is biased to ensure a certain outcome whilst trying to portray a modicum of fairness. Does the illegal govt honestly wish for a fair and equal footed election?! The other parties are obligated to highlight the inconsistencies in the decrees and electoral processes and if possible follow legal avenues but at the end of it all can we expect different result from that? Does that mean we as the people who supposedly endorsed upon the IMPOSED constitution to just throw our hands up and give in?! I’d rather the likes of Biman and Mick and Mahend and Roshika kept biting at the heels of the Illegal Govt. Illegal Govt needs to be voted out.

  5. Biman, can you pls advise when did you your resignation from Usp became effective and whether you were campaigning before your elections.

    Biman, can you also advise why your reft cherry dr nilesh goundar was campaigning with you? Is that not abuse and unethical? Are you above the law as well?

    By the way, can you inform the public where your wife and kids reside? How long have they been away from fiji? Biman, can you also own up of not supporting wadan in his time of need at usp?

  6. FLP sucker seems NFP’s popularity is making you as nervous as your chorwa leader. You are so bothered about Biman’s position, resignation and family, supporters and followers that it is obvious that you are a cranky, jealous and ill- informed about much. Why are you so bothered about where Biman’s wife and children are. From what most know his wife is very much in Fiji. So what if his family keep out of drama that FLP first family have. At least they don’t own millions gifted for poor in Fiji, at least the wife doesn’t own land in Labasa promised to displaced farmer. Least Biman’s children don’t own houses overseas from money like your chorwa’s children do from stolen money. By the way his resignation was all within USP policies, his wife is an academic at USP for more years than you can count on your fingers. So what if his children are still studying- at least they will not be as donkey head like you, your chorwa and his kids, and his girlfriend journalist.

  7. @ FLP: Please oblige and educate us as to what your party is counter-offering in response to the ideas being presented by NFP as per this discussion thread?

    None of the other parties apart from NFP are publicly courting voters as to what they promise to do, should they win hearts and minds come 17 September.

    Please do not make the same mistake of past elections where voters could easily be patronisingly broadsided with propaganda. Also remember that voters have had 7 years of this type of nightmare under the illegal & treasonous regime, lest voters mistakenly assume that the FLP has forgotten the common foe of the regime, and is now attempting to do the regime’s dirty work for them by whittling down the opposition.

  8. FLP is offering to raise $2m funds overseas for poor farmers and FLP supporters and to resettle them in Argentina. Try to beat that!

  9. Again the the kala kauwa! this man has the habit of bribing media and drawing false attention to secure his leadership in to gain public image on behalf of the Not For People [nfp] defunct Party. Can the kauwa explain as to why he resigned from the leadership after 2 days? mark my word this kauwa will also fled hiding under petty coat as his master Jai Ram Reddy did.

  10. Raftaar it seems you are more concerned about others skin color than looking at your own face in the mirror. Maybe you are so gutless and spineless that you have no color left on your face. Like all sour grapes of chorwa Labour Party followers you are being critical of others just to gain some self satisfaction. Keep pointing fingers and spitting at others- wind has changed your spit and fingers are also coming back to haunt you.

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