Fiji Coup Supplement


"The Truth"
(Ministry of Information, Suva)
13 September, 2000    



Cabinet yesterday approved the preparation of a 3-year Strategic Development Plan, which outlines the Interim Governmentıs broad visions, policy framework, policies and strategies.

The plan titled Strategic Development Plan 3 (2001 ­ 2003) aims to set the platform for:

The principal objective is to set the macroeconomic and sectoral policy platform for Government in the short and medium-term.

It will also prescribe key performance and accountability indicators which will provide the basic yardsticks for the economyıs progress over the plan period.

The Minister for Finance and National Planning, Ratu Jone Kubuabola informed Cabinet that given the volatility and uncertainty surrounding the countryıs economic situation, strategic planning is considered the most effective way of attempting to consolidate the economic situation and map out strategies for economic recovery.

It provides the flexibility to be able to respond in a timely manner to domestic and international developments.

The strategic plan will incorporate the work and consultations of the sector communities that were established for this purpose.

The theme of the plan is to be "Comprehensive Reform and Sustainable Investment and Growth."

Two accompanying documents will also be prepared namely the 10-year Development Plan for the Enhancement of Indigenous Fijians and Rotumans, and the Public Sector Investment Programme.

The blueprint which has the approval of the Bose Levu Vakaturaga will form the basis of the 10-year development plan for Fijian and Rotumans.

The 10-year development plan will spell out the mainstreaming, empowering and advancement of the participation of indigenous Fijians and Rotumans in the economy.

A spokesman from the Finance and National Planning Ministry said that components of the plan will be integrated into government sectoral strategies.

"And very importantly the implementation of the plan will not be to the detriment of other communities. The intention is to grow the nation and everyone benefits from the growth," the spokesman said.

The Public Sector Investment Programme meanwhile will outline in some detail a pipeline of investment projects consistent with the Interim Administrationıs priority sectors.

It will be a three-year rolling programme of investment designed to facilitate investment planning by Government.

All 3 documents are aimed to be launched in the first half of 2001.

Cabinet also agreed to the establishment of 11 taskforces to be the medium of the consultative process with all stakeholders.

A National Economic Summit will be convened in March 2001 as part of the consultative process in finalising the documents.



A government spokesman said that comments by Fiji Teachers Union General Secretary, Mr Agni Deo Singh on the Education Review Commission are politically biased and racist.

According to the spokesman, Mr Singh expressed surprise that Mr Kotobalavu is carrying the title Manager/Secretary of the Education Commission Secretariat.

"He should have known that it is the same title to which he was appointed right from the beginning of the review and not something new, so what is the point of highlighting it," said the spokesman.

As to his critical comments on the value of the Commissionıs Report, Mr Singh has slurred not only the Members of the Education Review Commission but, also the Peopleıs Coalition Cabinet, which appointed it.

"The Commission Members are all people of high standing and extensive experience in the field of education.  Their contribution to the report of the Review either collectively or individually will reflect the expertise and experience they have brought into their work as Members of the Commission."

The spokesman said, as part of the deliberate misinformation that people like Mr Agni Deo Singh and his colleague in the FPSA, Mr Rajeshwar Singh are spreading as part of their politically inspired propaganda, he refers to the cost of the Commission as being in excess of $1million.

"That is a deliberate lie.  The total budget for the Commission was $600,00 and of that only half has been spent and much of that came from aid donors."

Moreover, Mr Agni Deo Singh refers to his unionıs submission to the Review Commission and comments that the Commission will not even consider this submission from the FTU

The spokesman responded that it is a direct slur on the integrity of the Members of the Commission.

"The FTU Submission is a good one, and it has been studied thoroughly by the Members of the Commission but the FTU submission is not the only one made to the Commission.  There were hundreds of others.

"Agni Deo should not therefore expect the Commission to ignore and exclude the many hundreds of submissions that were received and only consider theirs from the FTU.

"His comments only go to show how shallow, superficial and parochial his thinking is which does not befit the professional head of an organisation of professional teachers," added the spokesman.



Statement by the Minister for Information & Communications, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola

The interim administration and all the people of Fiji, and especially indigenous Fijians, would like to thank Sir Mekere Morauta, the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea for his very reasonable and positive advice to Commonwealth leaders on the political crisis in Fiji.  I would like to send him our heartfelt and sincere gratitude for being so helpful and for being a genuine friend.

He is correct in advising the Commonwealth of the need for greater consultation with the people affected.  His advice is that the Commonwealth needs to adopt a positive attitude in helping countries like ours in our developmental tasks to ensure conditions for harmony and stability.  We fully support his recommendations, designed to assist.

We completely share his position discouraging punitive actions, such as misery and leave people embittered.

We sincerely hope that the Commonwealth, and the European Union too, where we are a partner with Papua New Guinea in various ACP-EU agreements, will all pay heed to Sir Mekere and put into practice his suggestions.

The approach adopted by Sir Mekere will help the interim administration in its efforts to achieve economic recovery and restore democracy within the time frame already stated.

Thank you, Sir Mekere for your genuine friendship.


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