Local News

20th September

Prasad says an independent Parliamentary counsel should have been requested

BECAUSE of the Government majority membership, an independent Parliamentary counsel should have been requested to guide the Privileges Committee on the report that was tabled in Parliament on a matter of privilege against Prime Minister...

Committee was at liberty to question any witness: Bhatnagar

THE Privileges Committee was at liberty to question any witnesses giving evidence on matters of privilege against Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua. This was the response from committee chairperson and deputy speaker Veena Bhatnagar to Mr Tikoduadua, who was summoned to give evidence before the Committee on September 3. He had...

Government MPs considered PM didn’t break glasses

GOVERNMENT MPs Inia Seruiratu and Mahendra Reddy considered that Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama didn’t break Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua’s glasses because they were in Mr Tikoduadua’s hand and not his pocket. This came up while they were scrutinising a video of Mr Bainimarama allegedly manhandling Mr Tikoduadua outside Parliament on August 9. Mr Tikoduadua had...

SG’s office requested to assist the Privileges Committee

THE Office of the Solicitor-General’s (SG’s) was requested to assist the Parliamentary Privileges Committee draft its report on a matter of privilege against Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua. This was highlighted in the Committee’s verbatim report The report records that Agriculture Minister and Committee member Dr Mahendra Reddy said that the...

19th September

Vodafone Fiji focus on cloud services

SMARTPHONES have become the key device used these days to carry out business deals and other similar transactions. Vodafone Fiji’s chief operating officer Ronald Prasad said they were focusing on cloud services which meant that data stored in the cloud by businesses – either small businesses or by huge enterprises – was much more secure....

CPA Congress, latest major regional and international gathering in Fiji

THE annual CPA Congress is only the latest in the string of major regional and international gatherings Fiji has had the privilege to host on the Fijian shores. Speaking at the CPA Congress this morning, Minister for Defense Inia Seruiratu said he believed that the congress, with its range of accomplished speakers, to be among...

Govt officials, disciplined forces to use official e-passport

SENIOR officials of Government and members of the disciplined forces will now be using an official e-Passport. Director of Immigration Nemani Vuniwaqa said the official e-Passport was new and was designed for Government officials who travel on official visits abroad. The cost of an official e-Passport is $250 while the urgent process cost is $300....

Fijian Government recognise kava as a crucial crop: Sovalawa

THE Fijian Government recognised kava as a crucial crop. Deputy Secretary for Agriculture Development, Jone Sovalawa said this during the regional Codex Committee meeting currently being held in Port Vila, Vanuatu. The proposed regional standard for the use of Kava products as a beverage was discussed at the meeting. “The Ministry of Agriculture recognizes kava...

Serua community health workers complete basic health services training

TWENTY-THREE community health workers in Serua who have successfully completed the intensive training in basic health services. The Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete congratulated the health workers while closing the training yesterday reminding the CHW’s about the importance of their roles as health workers. “I am certain that this training will...

Advisory: Traffic restricted to single lane on Queens Road, Navua from next week

MOTORISTS are being advised that the road will be reduced to a single lane on Queens Road in Navua from Monday next week. This because the Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) will be carrying out road reseals programme on Queens Road in Navua from Monday, September 23 to Friday, October 4, weather permitting. The FRA says...

Suva to host Miss Fiji pageant in November

SUVA will be hosting this year’s Miss Fiji pageant. Premila Kumar, Minister for Local Government in a statement issued today said the Miss Fiji Pageant contest 2019 will be held this year in Suva from November 18-23 at the Suva Civic Auditorium. Mrs Kumar said 17  Queens have been confirmed for the pageant and the...

Husband acquitted for attempted murder; convicted for assault

A HUSBAND  who was acquitted of  attempted murder but convicted for assault causing actual bodily harm has been further remanded by the High Court in Suva. Rakesh Chand appeared before Justice Chamath Morais today. He was initially charged with one count of attempted murder of his wife but later was acquitted after three assessors had...

17th batch graduate from Makoi Women’s Vocational Training Centre

FIFTY-EIGHT women graduated from the Makoi Women’s Vocational Training Centre  (MWVTC) today. Since the establishment of the Centre in October 2015, this year saw the 17th batch of women from all walks of life to graduate with their certificates in cooking, sewing and hydroponics. This makes a total of 906 women to have graduated from...

Fees for new or renewal of standard e-passports will be $200

THE launch of the e-Passport today shows how Fiji is taking the next step to a sweeping digital government transformation, says Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama. He made the said comment this morning  during the launch of the e-passports at the Immigration Office in Suva. “With today’s e-Passport launch, we are taking the next step to...

Education ministry lauds Health Promoting Schools program

MINISTRY of Education deputy secretary Timoci Bure has lauded the World Health Organisation’s Pacific Technical Support team and the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) for establishing and implementing the Health Promoting Schools program in Fiji over the past three years. Speaking at an awards ceremony this morning where 13 schools were recognised for achieving bronze,...

USP graduation: 460 graduate from FALE and FSTE

THE University of the South Pacific graduation begun today where a total of 460 graduated from Faculty of Arts, Law and Education (FALE) and the Faculty of Science Technology and Environment (FSTE). The first session of  graduation gathered hundreds of families and friends at the FMF Gymnasium in Laucala Bay, Suva. The ceremony also saw...

Nasilasila rape trial: Assessors return with a unanimous not guilty opinion

FORMER Fiji Sevens Rugby speedster Amenoni Nasilasila has been found not guilty of rape by the three assessors. His mother, Asivina Leanu, wept as the assessors returned their unanimous not guilty verdict. Lautoka High Court Judge Justice Daniel Goundar will deliver his judgement at 10am tomorrow.

Nasilasila rape trial: Judge sums up case; assessors retire to deliberate

LAUTOKA High Court judge Justice Daniel Goundar has informed the three assessors in the rape trial of former Fiji Sevens speedster Amenoni Nasilasila to form their own opinions on whether he is innocent or guilty. During his summing up today, Justice Goundar told the assessors they should assume Nasilasila was guilty simply because he did...

‘UN staff was on attachment’

A UNITED Nations Development Programme (UNDP) employee who is believed to have recorded the video of Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama allegedly manhandling Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua outside Parliament on August 9 while working for the Fiji Parliament, had not been given any Parliament induction. This has been revealed by the acting secretary-general to Parliament, Viniana...

Bhatnagar turns down proposal for witnesses

PARLIAMENTARY Privileges Committee chairwoman Veena Bhatnagar turned down proposals for more witnesses to give evidence on a matter of privilege against Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and suspended Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua, according to the committee’s verbatim report of September 5. It is alleged that on August 9, Mr Bainimarama manhandled Mr Tikoduadua outside Parliament. Mr...

Seruiratu: Apology is what everyone wants

THE first recommendation by the Parliamentary Privileges Committee to have Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua apologise to Parliament about what transpired on August 9 “seems to be what everybody wants”. Defence Minister and committee member Inia Seruiratu made the comments while the committee deliberated on their recommendations, the committee’s verbatim report...

Bulitavu explains common assault

THE alleged assault by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama on suspended Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua outside Parliament on August 9 could amount to common assault under the Crimes Act. This was the view of Opposition MP and member of the Parliamentary Privileges Committee, Mosese Bulitavu while they were deliberating on a matter of privilege against the...

‘Sound in CCTV footage not clear’

VEENA Bhatnagar, the Parliamentary Privileges Committee chairwoman, said the sound in the CCTV footage of the incident involving Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and suspended Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua that was provided to the committee was not clear. The committee’s verbatim report stated that Mrs Bhatnagar said the committee could not ascertain the words that were...

Reddy disapproves of evidence

AGRICULTURE Minister and Parliamentary Privileges Committee member Dr Mahendra Reddy disapproved of SODELPA MP Ratu Suliano Matanitobua giving evidence on a matter of privilege against Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and suspended Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua. This was revealed in the committee’s verbatim report of September 5, after Opposition MP Adi Litia Qionibaravi suggested to the...

MP calls for sentence to act as deterrent

OPPOSITION MP Mosese Bulitavu suggested to the Parliamentary Privileges Committee that they should consider what precedent they would be setting when dealing with the alleged assault by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama of Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua and should consider a sentence that would act as a deterrent to prevent an assault happening in the future....

Seruiratu on nature of offence

THE nature of the alleged offence by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama could be different if Opposition MP Pio Tikoduadua was injured, said Defence Minister and member of the Parliamentary Privileges Committee Inia Seruiratu. This is an observation he made to the committee according to its verbatim report dated September 5, 2019. Mr Tikoduadua had alleged...

150th anniversary: Unique masi newspapers printed for souvenirs

FOR 57 years (until 1969), the newsprint for The Fiji Times was supplied from the Powell River Mill in British Columbia, Canada. The Fiji Times was described as the mill’s oldest surviving partner. When Powell River’s first newsprint-making machine began operations on April 26, 1912, it was programmed to fill orders for The Fiji Times...

Social media policy – Teachers, students and parents cannot be ‘friends’

SCHOOL teachers are not allowed to have students or their parents as friends on social media. This is one of the new requirements in the Ministry of Education’s policy on the use of social media. Teachers have been told they can’t send friend requests nor accept requests from students and their parents. “If they exist,...

Walesi in Wainibuka

PEOPLE of Wainibuka in Tailevu now have better access to eight free-to-air channels offered by the new digital broadcasting platform Walesi. The TV platform introduced in Naveicovatu in Wainibuka yesterday was officially launched by Ministry of Communication and Information Technology permanent secretary Deborah Weiss. She said Walesi would ensure Fijians and students in Wainibuka had...

Taxi association takes LTA to court

The Fiji Taxi Association (FTA) has begun legal proceedings against the Land Transport Authority (LTA) over how the authority is allocating taxi permits through lottery. The association is arguing that no jurisdiction in the world does this and wants to know what relevant laws LTA is using for the lottery. Fiji Taxi Association secretary Ashwin...

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