Political forum not a solution: Batley

Yadra bloggers. SV is happy that Oz, NZ, USA & the EU are not buying Gate’s crap judgment and continue to insist on holding General Elections next year. We ask that travel bans remain in place until General Elections have been held and a new elected Government installed. The vandalism to the Chief Justice’s vehicle should be a wake-call to the illegal Gates. It serves as a reminder that ‘if I can do this to your car, imagine what I can do to you?’ Keep up the fight ragone and remember we are determined to see this through to the end!!!!


Taken from / By: Google

14th October 2008

Australia’s High Commissioner to Fiji James Batley says proposed talks between Fiji’s political parties will not do enough to move the country towards democracy.

Interim Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama last week invited Fiji’s registered political parties to meet for a discussion about ways to move the country forward after the 2006 coup.

Batley told the Australia Network that a return to democracy in Fiji remains Australia’s key objective and while a forum is a good start, it will not solve the issue.

He says political dialogue can only assist Fiji to move forward but it cannot be a substitute for having delayed elections.

The Pacific Islands Forum, including Australia, has expressed a willingness to get behind and to support a genuine independent and inclusive process of dialogue.

 Fiji Broadcasting Corporation


26 Responses to “Political forum not a solution: Batley”

  1. Ablaze Says:

    Excellent these countries are standing up against the Junta.

    They should have taken a tougher stance right from the start instead of just criticising the army for seizing power and still maintaining a close relationship with Fiji.

    I do hope we haven’t left it too late because of China’s influence, taking into account Jimmy Boy and Coup Leader Voreqe’s big achievement in acquiring the multi-billion-dollar soft loan from the Chinese Government? Was it the price for China’s entry into Fiji and the Junta’s way of showing these countries eg Australia that Fiji does not have to rely on their services. eg aid????????????

    What do you think Mark?

    Fiji-Aust ties ‘show Pacific-wide problems’

    An Australian newspaper has warned that Canberra’s poor links with Fiji is part of wider Pacific problem.

    The editorial in the Canberra Times warns that Australia sleeps in blissful ignorance as its undisputed place as regional leader is threatened and is about to change forever to its immense disadvantage.

    “The Pacific has always been our backyard, and a friendly place that we’ve used for restful holidays to ‘get away from it all’. As a result we took the tiny island states for granted, even when they were beginning to fall apart from internal conflicts and violence,” it says.

    “The clearest example of how these secure regional waters have suddenly changed into treacherous ones can be seen in Australia’s relationship with Fiji.

    “A series of coups and the current military-dominated Government (that we don’t approve of) threw up a series of diplomatic challenges.

    “How would it be possible to criticise the army for seizing power and still maintain a close relationship with the people of all ethnic groups on the islands?

    The editorial says that achieving this balance has proved to be completely beyond Australia’s capacity.

    “Instead of redoubling efforts to find a new way of engaging with different constituencies, Australia is now perceived as a wishy-washy regional power, prevaricating between action and rhetoric, completely unable to decide how it should act. By trying to walk in the centre, and sticking to a delicately neutral line, it has managed to alienate everyone.

    “The biggest blunder was probably the heavy-handed military exercise that took place just off the coast of Fiji in 2006.

    “This was gunboat diplomacy of the worst sort; farce that rapidly descended into tragedy when a helicopter was lost off the deck of HMAS Kanimbla. Two men died and another eight were injured.

    “This terrible event vividly demonstrated if there was any doubt that Australia had absolutely no capacity to take any military action against the coup leader.

    “But when Fiji’s Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama visited China recently he didn’t just intend to spend his time watching the Olympic Games.

    “When he left Beijing he took a sensational present with him: A multi-billion-dollar soft loan that at one stroke has completely emancipated the islands from any reliance on Australian aid.

    “Fiji has realised as have other Pacific islands that the emerging Chinese superpower is now ready to back its desires to engage with the region with serious money.

    “In a matter of weeks Australia has lost its once pre-eminent status in the region.

    “The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade was unable to provide even an off-the-record briefing about either the detail of the loan to Fiji, or how it might be spent.

    “It would be difficult to find a clearer indication of just how we were blindsided by the Chinese initiative, which has left our own efforts in the region completely outflanked.

    “It is neither possible nor desirable for Australia to buy influence in the region as it cannot hope to match the large amounts of money that a superpower can throw at the island states.

    “Nevertheless, where Australia has been able to shine in the past is by demonstrable goodwill, contact and genuine assistance over a long period of time.”

    The editorial warns Canberra about the consequences of losing its status as the major donor in the region.

    “If Australia doesn’t choose to maintain its links with the islands, they will quickly become the beneficiaries of Chinese aid and a crucial interaction with the region will be lost forever,” the Canberra Times warns.

    “Assuming the region will just look after itself is no longer good enough.”


  2. aubatinuku-N Says:

    Chinese involvement in the region is a worry especially with the sleeping bear (Russia) now waking up from it’s long slumber and Fiji’s slow dance with one of its minions (Cuba).

    We need to disengage ourselves from this evil, to align ourselves correct during these last days, already Fiji if fast becoming Al-Qaeda breeding ground and hideout and Voreqe Bainimarama just had to so stupidly go to the Chinese Olympics to seal the deal with China on the “SOFT LOAN”. We are going to be in even deeper trouble if we just continue to talk and no action.

    Russia may have the oldest weaponry in the world but biblical prophecy will be fulfilled and we do not want to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. I say this because China is its longarm and these communists will want a definite Military Base secured in the Pacific in every sense of the word and Baninimarama has offered Fiji to be the pushover.

  3. Striker Says:

    Well said Mr Batley. The political forum should not delay our elections past the promised March 09 date. Let’s have an election under the current system, and then get our elected representatives to talk elctoral reforms.

  4. Ablaze Says:

    Vinaka na chat aubatinuku-N. More please lets keep Vilisi’s fight in mind and lets not leave it too late for Fiji.

  5. Budhau Says:

    Going to court ani’t a solution either – now Qarase dude wants to appeal the decision – so what do you think if the higher court decided on Qarase’s favour – what is Bainimarama gonna do, hand over power to Qarase and march down to Naboro.

    Come on you guys, court case ain’t the answer – then what is -forum ain’t the answer and you buggers can’t remove this regime by force.

    So what you gonna do about?

    a-N – don’t worry about them Chinese – and that Al-Qaeda breeding ground.

    If Qarase was in power, he would be dealing with these same foreign folks.

    I think we should stick Biblical Prophecy.

  6. Jese Waqalekaleka Says:

    Hey Budhau,

    an appeal is a persons prerogative if they feel they need redress and the majority consensus at the moment if you have not noticed is the gate’s judgement is flawed. Criticisms are now flowing in within days of reading a judgement which took over 6 months to formulate!

    I suppose when a judgement takes so long to formulate and Gates and co trying to address every conceivable argument, but gets pulled apart within days, reveals the substance of the judgement. It is ironic that one of these critics is someone you loath, namely Tui Savu.

    BTW, the flawed Gate’s decision got one fact right and that is the coup was illegal!

    As for not being able to remove this illegal regime by force, what are you willing to place as a wager?

    As I said to you before Budhau, if you cannot ‘walk the walk, then don’t talk the talk.’

  7. Budhau Says:

    Sure is – let me be a little legal here – so we have a defacto government in Fiji now and if Garase prevails in his appeal – he that will be the de jure government.

    Then what?

    Savu ain’t shit – you want some good legal stuff – get some like Apted in here.

    Savu’s discussion with the Gitmo decision last week had nothing to do with what is happening in Fiji. BTW – the habeas Corpus lawyer for Osama’s driver – he was Indian (just for you Indian haters)

    As for removing this regime by force – it gonna by out of the frying pan and in the fire – fire karo, fire karo.

  8. newsfiji Says:

    Fijian military chief threatens prime minister, Thursday November 2nd 2006:

    The Gurdian, UK

    A confrontation between Fiji’s military and its civilian government deepened today as the island’s military commander warned of bloodshed if the prime minister did not resign.
    “The last thing we want to do is have bloodshed, but the prime minister is pointing us in that direction,” Commodore Frank Bainimarama told New Zealand’s National Radio from Egypt, where he was visiting Fijian peacekeeping troops.

    Mr Bainimarama urged the prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, to resign, but said the military would not carry out a coup. Mr Qarase yesterday said his government would not be forced out and offered talks with Mr Bainimarama to avert a crisis.

    Relations between the two men have been strained for months, and this week Mr Qarase tried to sack Mr Bainimarama, but senior military officers rallied round their commander.

    Mr Bainimarama brought Mr Qarase to power after Fiji’s last coup in 2000 – the former British colony’s third since 1987. But in recent months the commander has become increasingly outspoken in his condemnation of what he sees as government corruption.

    In particular he strongly opposes a government bill that could grant amnesty to some of the indigenous Fijian nationalists who overthrew the country’s first Indo-Fijian prime minister in 2000.

    The current standoff is between two high-profile indigenous Fijians, in contrast to previous coups, in which indigenous nationalists moved to prevent Indo-Fijians from controlling the government.

    The May 2000 coup by armed nationalists devastated Fiji’s tourism- and sugar-based economy and Mr Qarase has said more upheaval would be “a disaster”.

    Police said Fiji was calm today. “I think it’s the beginning of easing the situation, the tension between the military commander and the government,” Mr Qarase told reporters in the capital Suva, despite Mr Bainimarama’s rhetoric.

    Fiji’s tourism minister, Tom Vuetilovoni, said visitors had no reason to fear for their safety. But Australia and New Zealand are readying warships in case they need to evacuate nationals and Washington has warned of aid cuts if there is another coup.

    Regional leaders have declared their support from Mr Qarase. The British Commonwealth secretary general, Don McKinnon, said his group of 53 democracies, which includes Fiji, supported the government.

    “We have no tolerance for military leaders who overthrow democratic governments,” Mr McKinnon said in a statement.

    The Papua New Guinea prime minister, Sir Michael Somare, former chairman of the Pacific Islands Forum, said that the group of 16 nations was committed to supporting the Fijian government in a crisis.

    The Australian foreign minister, Alexander Downer, told parliament he had discussed with fellow forum nations “about what as a region we could do to assist the Fiji government”.

    “We are certainly doing everything we possibly can to try to stop the coup taking place,” Mr Downer said.

    As a member of both the forum and the Commonwealth, New Zealand’s prime minister, Helen Clark, said Mr Bainimarama should accept that his role was not to replace governments. Unquote.

    My big question is: what powers does Bainimarama have as a civil servant who comes under the Minister for Home Affairs to threaten the elected Prime Minister??

    Did Gates consider this as well? Bainimarama was ordering Qarase to resign long before the President came into the picture. And to top it all off, as the President he should have intervened, called both parties and tell Bainimarama that he is just the Army Commander not bloody Commander in Chief.

    SV: can we put up some sort of time line of when Bainimarama started to threaten the elected PM?

    Bainimarama’s threats to the elected Prime Minister before the President intervenend were not pardoned by the courts, i believe it’s the actions after which start on or around December 2006.

    Prior to that date, we have evidence to fry the Commander for criminal offenses. I’m no legal eagle but am sure this should count for something.

  9. Budhau Says:

    The Court does not pardon anyone – it is the President – and he will give a blanket pardon – criminal and all.

  10. IslandBoy Says:

    Bula Vinaka SV – Sorry to digress, dua ga na kerekere oqo. I would like to send the entire judgement document to someone overseas. Can someone please give me a link or post a copy of the judgement where it can be downloaded.

    Vinaka Vakalevu!

  11. Budhau Says:

    Its on the front page of Fiji times dude – all 49 pages.

  12. Budhau Says:

    It is on the front page of Fiji times dude

  13. IslandBoy Says:

    @aubatinuku-N – Bula vinaka na wekaqu, good to hear from you.

  14. Mark Manning Says:

    The Australian Government was in consultation with the Fijian Government , months before the coup and advised Mr Qarase of the potential for a coup . I should know , because I advised ASIO in July 2005 .

  15. ispy Says:

    Badhau, you are right, the court doesn’t pardon people.

    By law, its the President who has the power to pardon – hence the expression “Presidential Pardon”.

    But Badhu, can you please explain this to me (you see I’m a little slow on matters of law)

    If the President has the power to pardon, what the fuck he doing giving Bainimarama and the military “immunity” from prosection through the “Immunity Decree”.

    Perhaps this derelict President needs to learn the difference between “pardon” and “immunity” because the I am told they are very very different. One refers to forgiving after conviction and the other refers to exemption from even being charged with an offence.

    As I understand it, the President never had the power to grant immunity, not under the Consitution not even under his common law reserve powers.

    However because of the fuzzy logic expounded in the recent ruling by the very very gay acting CJ (back) Gates, we are all forced to accpet the notion that it is now law in Fiji that the President can do whatever the fuck he wants to do in Fiji, without limitation and without consequence.

    Forget elections.

    Forget parliamentary democracy.

    Lets all vie to be President… thats where the power is, isn’t it?

  16. Budhau Says:

    Very good ipsy – so did Gerald Ford pardon Nixon, of did he give him immunity – maybe we should look at the US constitution for an answer.

    Did Rabuka ever got convicted of his crimes – or did he also find a way around it – a legal way.

    Thus in this case you can argue all you want – them boys are gonna walk – either under this immunity or one provided as a condition for then giving up power – FB and they biys ain’t going to jail – unless you take them down by force.

    here is what the court said.

    Here the case was about the lawfulness of certain acts carried out by the President following military intervention. FB and the boys maintain that the
    President retained prerogative powers which enabled him to act in an emergency for the public good. They also argued that those powers enabled the President to ratify the acts of the military in the takeover, and
    ultimately in consequence absolving the participants of unlawfulness.

    By the way – Qarase’s lawyers screwed up.

  17. Jean d'Ark Says:

    Yeah, I guess Qarase’s lawyers just couldn’t believe Gates would be as mercenary and conspiratorial as he turned out to be on 9th October.

    I always thought they should have forced the President to testify which would have put paid to all this speculation about what he did or did not, do or intend.

    In any case, we have now seen what a no-account, intellectually-abject, co-conspirator like Gates can read into the facts with when presented with the arguments concerned.

    What I am waiting for is what competent and credible supreme court judges will make of it when they are eventually given a look on appeal.

  18. Budhau Says:

    I wasn’t following the case that closely – but wouldn’t the president have some executive privilege when it comes to serving the president with a subpoena – when the matter relates to his official duties – Unlike Clinton v. Jones in the US.

    As for them lawyers not knowing what judges can do in such circumstances – they all read those Pakistani cases.

    ..and at the end of the day – I don’t see a “legal” solution to this problem – the bigger question is a political one, not a constitutional one.
    Because no court has the power to enforce their judgment – the government of the day can thumb its nose at the court – be it Qarase or Bainimarama.

    As for the Supreme Court – so let us assume that they come down in favor of Qarase – then what – FB would have no choice to abrogate the constitution – and we will be back to square one.

  19. Peace Pipe Says:

    Mr Batley being a diplomat has to be pragmatic. That is why he is not saying whether he accepts the Gates ruling or not. Being law abiding he has to accept whatever a court rules which is why he is now saying the holding of elections as promised is the precursor to the lifting of sanctions and resumption of aid. We urge all these countires to continue on their position against the interim govt despite the flawed gaytes ruling. Make elections the demand for any restoration of anything.

    As we can see this judgement will set the ig plans into higher gear and they pursue all avenues of achieving and securing their objectives – self enrichment, power retention, escape route, continuity of power through manipulation etc. This is already manifesting itself. For example meli vesikula said on tv the ncbbf work will now be much easier as the question of legality is now being disposed of. The govt through the civil servants are now mounting a drive to propagate the farter charter through the health and education ministries and to school students in forms 6&7. They are in the actual process of shoving the charter down our throats. I have a feeling all our gates to freedom are now closed and we have to live with this nightmare since we cannot do anything legal to challenge them since they hold and control the all the powerful offices. So we have to depend on our big brothers to do something to save us. Burma and Pakistan have endured this for nearly 10 years or so and I wonder how the people felt because 2 years of this army rule in Fiji is absolute misery. The problem is we have a country who supports illegal govt (I still say it is illegal even though Gayte says it is legal) which is China. This gives a lot of confidence to the ig to continue defying all warning and advices from friendly countries and organisations. UN is another culprit who is aiding in the arrogance of the ig into thinking that it is ok.

  20. Budhau Says:

    Gates did not say whether this government was legal or illegal.
    What FB did is illegal on the face of it – the burden would be on FB put forward his doctrine of necessity to show why his action should not be deemed illegal.

    Here is a quote from the Gates decision.

    “The court has not been asked to approve the acts of the military in
    taking over the executive, in removing the Prime Minister and the Cabinet, or in ordering the dissolution of Parliament. These were not the matters litigated in this case. Instead the parties wished to have an answer to the question as to whether the President could act in the crisis of
    December 2006 and January 2007 in the way that he did.”

  21. Mark Manning Says:

    the biggest threat to Australia and New Zealand from the Pacific , is people smuggling , child prostitution , drug running , weapons and terrorism because of the abject poverty being created , in particular in Fiji , by coups .
    I have already advised the Australian Government , current and passed and I’ve received replies to my e-mails through the post .
    Our government is fully aware of the ongoing problems , but Fijians must take control of their own destiny , with our help if required and if requested , but often we are told to butt out of you internal affairs . so it’s difficult to know what to do exactly . I believe you have to fight the forces of evil within your own countries 1st. before anyone can help you .

  22. newsfiji Says:

    Budhau: thanks for your help and assessment of the Gates ruling on the Qarase case. It’s helping us a lot in trying to make sense of it.

    So now we know where to attack.

    Well, i just Thank God that the President did not testify, the bloody courtroom would have been smelling like shit with him coughing and farting his way through the bloody proceedings…and his usual “excuse me” or “ni vosoti au” rants after every few sentences…

    What a bloody joke! Ba..ha..ha..ha..

  23. Isalei Says:

    Rest in peace Budah.

  24. Soul of Fiji Says:

    I think Gates had prepared 2 judgements very similar in the introduction and body but different in conclusion; the first he was reading before the bomb threat which was for LQ.

    The bomb threat which also threatened Gates; so he left and returned later with the second judgement to be in favour of the illegals.

    Food for thought……

  25. Soul of Fiji Says:

    Suddenly we have the Budhau alive and kicking, I wonder what made his appearance. It must be the court victory of the illegals, must have made his day.

    He disappeared once his Master Choro were sent packing from the Illegals team.

    But wait Master Choro (MC) will be back, he just went to try and consolidate his supporters for they were leaving by the 100’s as they could not trust the man who used them to get the money from India and once the money was deposited into his account he changed the reason why the money was sent to him, to his own use.

    If he was the real champ of the farmers he would have given the money to the evicted poor farmers (not all sugar cane farmers are poor).

  26. George of Sydney Says:

    Budhau, no one is above the law (constitution). The constitution is still not being abrogated and it is still the supreme law. Rt Iloilo’s action will have to be justified by law. If the court is justified that Rt Iloilo’ action is illegal, then everything has to return to pre-coup rule i.e Qarase govt has to be reistated. That is why Qarase is appealing to a higher court who can overule the High Courts decision.
    I can assure you that if Qarase wins his appeal, Bainimarama will have no other choice but to ABROGATE THE CONSTITUTION and declare DICTATORSHIP RULE. This where his personal his the supreme law. Now when that happens everything will be in a mess.
    I hope he doesn’t go for another backpay which he shamely did even when there was a constitutio, and there was someone above him.

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