fiji UNCENSORED

May 3, 2009

Tough times loom as regime finds role for turncoat adjective

OPINION

FIJI’S military regime has finally found an opportunity to use the word “purported”. Up until yesterday, the adjective was widely employed to describe the regime’s claim that it had abrogated the 1997 Constitution.

Responding to the Pacific Islands Forum decision to suspend Fiji’s membership on the eve of World Press Freedom Day, Acting Prime Minister and Attorney-General  Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said it was also a fallacy to claim that the suspension only targeted regime officials and its ministers.

“The purported suspension of the Prime Minister, ministers and officials from all meetings and arrangements by the forum and stopping Fiji from benefiting from any new financial and technical assistance is short-sighted.”

Khaiyum’s use of the term is being seen by some as a move to counter the forum’s use yesterday of the word “albeit”.

“What this in effect means is that Fiji and her people are being targeted,” he said.

While we make light of the situation, Khaiyum’s response also amounts to a more serious but sluggish realisation that suspension will hurt the country.

Khaiyum said they would have to look for alternative sources to fill the expected shortfalls in funding. “The Government [will] carry out its own assessments and source alternative arrangements.

“We have access to countries and multilateral agencies that may wish to provide assistance to fill in any void.”

No prizes for guessing which countries he was referring to. And oh, to those of you who live in places where such liberties exist, happy World Press Freedom Day.  fiji uncensored

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