Does the Govt have a cashflow problem or is it Zimbabwe here we come?

Fiji Times, Tuesday, December 30, 2008

THE Commerce Commission is again at risk of closing its operations because of lack of funds.Chairman Charles Sweeney wrote to interim Attorney-General and Commerce Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum explaining their situation on December 16.

Mr Sweeney said the organisation had only $5000 and after payment of rent next month, would be left with no money.

He aired the commission’s problems while responding to the interim A-G’s letter asking for the commission’s view on whether the Telecommunications Price Order should be amended, revoked or varied. Questions sent to the A-G’s office last week remained unanswered yesterday.

The commission was forced to close for eight days from September 26 to October 3 because it did not have money to operate.

For the new year, the commission has been allocated $442,000 for its operations.

As Mr Khaiyum has not responded to queries, it is not clear when the commission will receive its quarterly allocation.

Questions were also sent to Mr Sweeney who did not want to comment on the issue.

One of the issues is a decision on the telecommunications price order.


22 Responses to “Does the Govt have a cashflow problem or is it Zimbabwe here we come?”

  1. Keep The Faith Says:

    And which govt entity do they envisage will encourage & regulate commercial activity for the benefit of the masses in this country?

    Oh ok I forgot – the RFMF as per the ’09 budget allocations.

  2. loru Says:

    I’m pretty sure the cashflow is nil-the pond is all dried-up Bai has all the funds all stocked-up in his bank account in India, his soon to be permanent home address. Eveli Ganilau, Eveli Nailatikau and Ului Mara will certainly, be the only Fijian neighbours, he’s going to have to be content with, for the rest of their natural lives!!!!

  3. bodyguard Says:

    SV…the govt kitty is dried up. the only govt entity(s) that seems to be rec’ing its share of the budget without scrutiny of its expenses is RFMF and the PMs office.

    a slight leak of info one dept is brought under the PMs portfolio to keep the secrets closer to their heart. look at all the ministeries & depts under PMs officer. the truth is…the govt is fast running out of $$ – reason for decision to buy new vehicles on ‘operating lease’, taking over the municipal councils, etc.

    if one group of idiots we should question for this mess….and where their loyalty truely lies….its the soldiers. they swore to protect their country, ppl and everthing else with their life. now with all the armour, training, skills these wannabe macho man rambo steven segal arseholes….are the biggest chicken pufta qauri lamusona sonalevu ppl we have ever come across….

    vakarerevaki mai gauna yaco kina na COUP in 2006 …. kodrokodro tiko vaka na koli ni kaidia….ni yavu boci.

    dou caita ga nomudou koma-DA kei presitedi ILOILO SONALEVU.


    Lastly, where is the evidence of corruption??

  4. Peace Pipe Says:

    We are indeed inching towards Zimbabwe at the rate the ig is carrying on and God help us if we do get there. The ig doesnt give a damn where we are headed as long as it gets what it wants i.e. money, power and recognition. A thought just occured to me – is the ig a recognised govt and by whom?

    This idiot of an ag iarse is totally incompetent that this is now the 2nd time this has happened to the commerce commission. Not forgeting his other major blunders. That fellow Sweeney too is stupid enough to accept and carry on as chairman of the commission in spite of the illegality and incompetence of the ig.

    Folks there is a good letter in today’s FT by Mere Samisoni regarding the inherent evil of the farter charter. This is what everyone should know about the ulterior motive of the farchar and that is the military will be custodian of the farchar and that if the army is not happy with the actions of the elected govt it could step in and intervene. How true.

    What about the other letter which highlighted the cunning move by the NCBBF which recommends a body to implement the farter charter. Talk about perpetuating one’s employment, all those no Qaru people in the NCBBF

  5. Mark Manning Says:

    As the ship starts to slowly sink into the abyss ( depths of the ocean ) , the rats will abandon ship !

  6. Fijian Cooperative Business Says:

    Fiji reserves enough for 3 months: RBF

    Fiji at the end of November had official reserves of $824.7 million, enough to sustain imports for only 3.1 months, according to the Reserve Bank of Fiji’s December Economic Review.

    The RBF said Fiji’s investment conditions are still subdued despite growth seen in lending for investment purposes and imports of investment goods recently.

    It said investment is expected to remain at 15 percent of GDP, as in 2007.

    The Reserve Bank has predicted that investment levels are not expected to increase for 2009.

    It adds that the International Monetary Fund is expecting the world growth to slow down with a revised world growth down to 3.7 percent for this year and a 2.2 per cent forecast next year.

    In regards to the labour market, the RBF says that conditions remain weaker than last year with only 7400 employees registered as taxpayers representing an annual decline of 14.2 percent.

    RBF stated that prospect for employment look favourable as indicated by the Job Advertisement Survey. However it is assumed that this may be driven by jobs left vacant by migrants and some employees switching jobs, rather than new job creation.

    The good news is inflation rates fell to 7.7 percent in November compared to 8.5 percent in October. The 2008 year end inflation projection is still at 7.5 percent.

    Next year, inflationary pressures are likely to ease given weaker global demand and relatively lower prices of commodities.

    In November, the Nominal Effective Exchange Rate (NEER) fell by 0.7 percent over the year. The annual fall in NEER indicates a depreciation of the Fiji dollar against its major trading partner currencies.


  7. FijiGirl Says:

    I think it goes without saying that the kitty is bare.
    Like Vore’s hero, Mugabe, the regime has milked every last drop from our treasury reserves.
    Because, like Chodo, they refuse to feed the poor cow, they are slowly coming to the realisation that government ain’t as easy as it looks.
    Let us bring forward the final cut to sever this regime’s hold, please.
    People, write to the UN imploring them to ban the use of Fiji’s military in ANY peacekeeping missions.
    Here is a starter email address
    If any of the bloggers know of a better one, please feel free to post it up.
    God bless Fiji

  8. FijiGirl Says:

    With the meeting of the Pacific Forum leaders next month, you can also write to the embassies of the Forum nations, the Forum Secretariat itself ( as well as the Forum Secretariat’s partner organisations, listed below.
    Asian Development Bank –,
    UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific –,
    Food & Agricultural Organisation (Samoa rep),
    Fiji School of Medicine –,
    Pacific Islands Forum Fisheries Agency –,
    Pacific Islands Development Programme ,
    Pacific Islands Law Officers Network ,
    Pacific Islands Private Sector Organisation ,
    Secretariat of the Pacific Community ,
    Pacific Islands Applied Geoscience Commission ,
    South Pacific Board for Educational Assessment ,
    Secretariate of the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme ,
    South Pacific Travel,
    UN Development Programme, and
    University of the South Pacific.
    God bless Fiji

  9. Tomu Says:

    First of all Who is this Mr Charles Sweeney? Is this man a local person or an expatriate know all?
    Maybe we should re-look at some of these commission to see why they cannot be self-sufficient?
    I mean, its time for the government to review some of these Government made commission ;and see why they cannot run by themselves and if need be then maybe, they all need a major upgrades?
    Some of these Commission Chairmans, really abuse their position by misusing their Government funds, in taking speedy holidays and overseas conferences, using this funds. It has to stop somewhere and it might as well start now! Maybe its time to fire Mr Sweeney and put a Mr Qarikau in his place as the new chair?

  10. Colin Bishop Says:

    In the latet RBF report there is a one liner that sums up the immediate economic prospects of Fiji.

    “In November about 7,400 employees were registered as taxpayers, representing an annual decline of 14.2per cent”

    Considering the tax start threshold this show a dramatic reduction in employment.

  11. bodyguard Says:

    Tomu …. if u knew the role of the Commerce Commission then ur question is answered.

    u sound like a coup supporter….always coming up with corrupt theories with no hard evidence. stop wasting everyones energy with ur one line bullshit.

    happy new year…..SV. the military govt must fall in 2009….right now the only thing will save them is to have an election.

    god bless ppl.

  12. Tash Says:

    Even a 5th Grader can work it out – you need money coming in for those goons to spend at the rate they are spending.

    At the moment Fiji’s economy is nothing to rave on about! Tourist Industry is very shaky, was there 3 weeks ago and stayed at the Sofitel, we were told by the employees that the hotel was down 25% occupancy for this time of the year – it looked to me like 75%. We enjoyed the luxury but there was something missing, the enthusiam, the laughter. What we experienced was the false smile and the false “bula” In other words they were sad because they knew something was not right. We only went there because of the cheap package. Fiji was a holiday destination that people like us went back time and time again for the hospitality.

    What made it worse when I asked a realative of mine who had 6 children what impact it had on her family – her reply was “no impact” I said nothing but tried to think about their situation.

    Mum and Dad, full time jobs, 2 house girls, a mortgage, school fees – what future for those kids in a coup culture nation and left it at that. Wasn’t an Indian family either.

  13. Nostradamus Says:

    And now the one of the apologist priests has raised the minimum wage.
    That should encourage employment and investment (not). Perhaps the republican guard can be redirected to the garment industry to demonstrate their inate burgeoning productivity.

    One would have thought there would be plenty of confessions to keep him busy these days, and Voreqe can declare war on the United States to keep his army and his Islamic terrorists employed.

  14. Mark Manning Says:

    Why would you celebrate having the minimum wage being $2.30c below the poverty line ?
    Which I believe is $4.50c !

  15. Corruption Fighter Says:

    The dictator’s typically stupid Vakatawase gesture to the United States Embassy (I assume it was talcum powder), is no doubt his way of wishing the Americans a happy and prosperous New Year. But now that 2009 is here I cannot see anything happy or prosperous about it. On the contrary, thanks to Frank, we can’t expect any prosperity as our economy goes further down the drain. And if Fiji’s 2009 is anything like the 2008 we have just suffered, can someone please tell me when the happy part will kick in.

    The only diversion for me is trying to predict what our bipolar dictator is going to do next. His sheer, childish unpredictability makes it so challenging!

    One clue could be in a posting I read on RFN that Teleni has rubbish binned the investigations into the “death threats” against the Ozzie ambassador. Does this mean that Australia’s envoy in Suva is not going to be around for much longer because he’s going to get the same treatment as his Kiwi counterpart? That’s my first prediction.

    My second prediction is that the dictator will find an excuse not to attend the next Pacific Forum meet in Port Moresby at the end of the month. Why should he? he must know by now that he’s increasingly on the nose with the other member states and that every time he does something or says something his credibility rating gets that much lower with his regional counterparts.

    Australia and New Zealand don’t take kindly to their diplomats being kicked out and harassed with death threats and their influence with other Forum member countries is a lot greater than Frank would think. He pretends to everyone that it’s a “them and us” situation, but with our traditional friends and neighbors less and less impressed by his stupidity and puffed up strutting ego, the Pacific Forum is increasingly becoming more like a “them and him” situation.

    Who else has any predictions as to what the maniac dictator might do in 2009?

  16. ex Fiji Tourist Says:

    CF, bananasinpyjamas definitely won’t go to PNG in 4 weeks time.

    He’ll make some pathetic excuse about the Australians not giving him a visa to transit through Brisbane.

    To call this bluff, Aust should have an RAAF Hercules on standby to drop into Suva to pick up bananas and take him directly to PNG.

  17. Tash Says:

    ex Fiji Tourist

    That is a brillant idea but the Aussies should have PM Rudd pick him up in the RAAF Hercules from Nadi.

    Do it in style, the idiot will jump at all the attention he will receive. He is a bit like that.

  18. Fiji Democracy Now Says:

    @CF and ex Fiji Tourist: If there is one thing we know for certain about the way our dictator’s obsessive mind works, it’s the fact that it’s all about him.

    Voreqe Bainimarama is a very vain man, which is why we agree with both of your predictions.

    First, we recall all too clearly the dictator’s interview with NZTV about the Michael Green expulsion and the way he contradicted the interviewer by asking her, “Is he (Green) my friend?”

    The dictator personalizes everything and his personal resentment against New Zealand’s and Australia’s travel bans will manifest itself in unwarranted action against the Australian High Commissioner, James Batley, in exactly the same way it manifested at the personal level against Michael Green and Caroline McDonald.

    Second, the dictator’s vanity will not let him face the risk of being lectured to by other Forum leaders in Port Moresby, which is why he’ll find an excuse (probably at the last moment) not to attend the meeting on Thursday, 29 January 2009.

    But the real issue (in the real world) is not about the collapse of Bainimarama’s personal prestige. Apart from him, who gives a damn?

    Where does Fiji’s reputation stand now in the eyes of the world? As far as the rest of the world is concerned, Bainimarama is reducing our beloved nation to a disrespected basket case.

    We, the people of Fiji, can no longer hold our heads up with our friends in the Pacific for as long as our vain, self-absorbed and immature dictator continues to drag us down.

  19. Tash Says:

    It saddens me and my heart goes out to those children and the struggling parents.

    Please SV can we please sponser just one child – say a scholarship or something to make me feel I am doing something instead of just talking!

    I posted this in another thread!

    Tash Says:

    December 31, 2008 at 11:10 am
    Thanks Mark will take note.

    Gosh couldn’t get over this when I read it in the F/T.

    “Boarders who have more needs such as mattresses, linen and so on will have to pay more.”

    I can just see those poor boarders carrying their mattresses on boats, buses on their way to and fro to the hostel. This is unbelievable, here we have a government who spends money trying to justify their misdeeds and no mattresses in the boarding house. All that money spent on the charter could have been used to buy mattresses for the poor kids.

    Filipe Bola please get your act together. Buy mattresses for the boarding houses in all Government schools and get the kids to bring in mattress covers that can be washed now and again for clean hygiene.

    If these poor kids cannot afford the mattresses now, I hate to think the cheap line mattresses that they are going to buy – it won’t be inner spring but poor quality chinese foam which will not do their backs any good.

    Oh what a mess and my relative the one that has 6 children said; “this illegal Government has no impact?????

  20. Katalina Balawanilotu Says:

    Tash you can sponsor a student.

    Make contact with the school of your choice and set it up directly with the Principal.

  21. Katalina Balawanilotu Says:

    Not surprising. Monies for the Commission were obviously allocated towards the hiring of the extra 100+ soldiers just a few months back. Like Fiji is under threat from Tahiti.

  22. Tash Says:

    Katalina have just received info – funds could be given to the children who lost their fathers by the thugs – the names I must find out.

    I think it is a brillant idea and great for SV.

    More like you is what we want!

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