The Fiji bottled water suppliers should go straight to the court seeking to have the tax imposed by the illegal government on their exports tested by the court.

 The Constitution says quite plainly that laws are passed by the Parliament. Section 175 states that all raising of revenue, whether by taxation or otherwise, must be authorized by or under an Act.

 Promulgations are bullshit. The post 87 Interim Government ruled by decree because it successfully claimed that the constitution had been abrogated. The current gang of thieves claims the constitution has not been abrogated.

 No doubt illegal CJ Gates may claim that this issue would need to await the Qarase legal action. But that, too, would be bullshit. This is a separate issue, pertaining specifically to the powers of any “interim” government under any supposed powers conferred upon the President by the doctrine of necessity.

 Even if an “interim” government is “needed” to meet the circumstances of some “necessity”, the constitution, within which the doctrine of necessity is supposed to operate, remains.

 Just go to the words of the “Promulgation” and demand that the so-called state show how the constitution authorizes an “interim” government to defy the constitution on such basic and unambiguous matters.

 “IN exercise of the powers conferred upon the Interim Government, and upon the exercise of my own deliberate judgement as President of the Republic of the Fiji Islands as to what is best and good for the people of Fiji, and by the executive authority of the State in accordance with section 85 of the Constitution and such other powers as may appertain, and with the advice of Cabinet, I, Josefa lloilovatu Utuivuda, make this Promulgation”

 Ask FIRCA, who wish to collect the tax, to show to a court where Section 85 states that it over-rides Section 175. Section 85 vests the executive authority of the State in the President. It doesn’t vest the legislative authority in the executive arm of government. While the court continues pretending to consider the case of the removal of the

Qarase Government, it is an entirely separate issue as to whether, the new executive appointed after the dismissal of Qarase has the power to legislate.

Because of the commercial imperative, the bottled water producers should be able to ask a court to look at this as a matter of urgency. A finding in favour of the water bottlers might not bring down the Bainimarama dictatorship, but it would force it to behave in accordance with law.



5 Responses to “TAKE THEM TO THE COURT”

  1. FijiGirl Says:

    Well said, Navosavakadua, but I fear that the bottlers, as private enterprise is wont to do, will seek the path of least resistance and make a deal with the illegal regime.

    The bus companies flexed their considerable muscles, but were soon talked around by the IR.

    The water companies, who have less ‘people power’ than the bus companies, are more than likely to cut a deal, sadly.

    The real power to stop this regime lies with Us, the People!

    God bless Fiji

  2. Mark Manning Says:

    So my promulgation the other day was bullshit ?

  3. Tim Says:

    @MM: Oh Mark really! As Rishi once said to the Public Servants: Behave! (as though he expected they should take the illegal Interim hoonta seriously)

  4. Budhau Says:

    You see Navosavakadua, let us look at the case of the big boy of the water business – Fiji Water is good business and what they do regarding this tax would be a business decision – they do not give a crap whether this government is constitutional or not.

    So the decision here would based on the fact that they have a product that costs them US$4.00 landed in the US, they sell it for US$50.00.

    Now the IG wants about US 12 cents for bottle in tax – and that cost could be passed on to the consumer – or if competition is tight – they can absorb this cost and still make a huge profit.

    I know that the other players do not make the same kinda money – however what these guys are going to look at is does this make business sense or not.

    Navosavakadua – you did make a good case for your side – however, most businessess regardless of what kind of case it is – they usually want to get a settlement and move on with the business of making money – and in this case, I do not think they will put up a fight beyond the protests that we have already seen.

    I agree with FijiGirl about the people power – you see how scared the IG is of the civil servants and how hard they come down on them for any insubordination – They do this because they know that if the civil service decides not to work with the IG – even if they do a “go slow” kinda protest – the IG would be totally screwed. That is why they make an example of any civil servant who says anything against the IG – no matter how insignificant that may be.

  5. Groggymaster Says:

    Since when do governments tax foreign companies on their foreign ie (US) sales?
    Fiji Water is the Fiji Bottling company. The marketing arm in the US is a sister subsidiary of the Fiji bottling company. The clever marketing placed Fiji Water in a premium market and hence the premium price, but at the end of the day, it was the marketing effort of the US company. So stop the wishful thinking.
    Taxing the water at such high rates will dampen the success of the water bottling industry as the reality is “plain water” bottling is really a low margin high volume business.
    In fact doubt wholesales sales prices to NZ , Australia or even the US (other than in Fiji Water’s market) can be sustained at more than F$4 per carton.
    Unless Chodo wants to market the product. (He doesn’t even want to market fiji s a tourism destination)
    Now there is a lesson – the Fiji Govt should assist by paying for the marketing so that Fiji Products & tourism can sell at massive premiums as Fiji Water does in the US. The water bottlers will be happy to split the premiums over F$4 per carton 50/50 with Chodo – how about that. The brand Fiji is strong internationally and it could work.

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