Attorney General, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has told Members of the Opposition not to feign empathy for the poor, and not to feign their patriotism, intellectual input and credibility by producing some email that was not read in full.
While speaking during his 2020/2021 National Budget Right of Reply, Sayed-Khaiyum says the opposition is yet again misleading parliament during the budget debate.
He also says he is concerned that the Leader of the Opposition, Sitiveni Rabuka supported the budget on budget night but then went against it during the debate.
Sayed-Khaiyum says Rabuka had said on July 17th that we have to be positive when you talk about the measures that have been announced in the budget, it is a courageous budget and it is up to us to critique it properly and hopefully the nation can get behind it and they achieve the goals to get the economy back on track.
He also highlighted that Rabuka was discrediting the RBF in his budget response speech but then went on to quote the RBF figures to back his own argument.
The Minister for Economy also says there was nothing sinister in him sending an email to the Prime Minister in 2013 about how the GDP base figures were being calculated. Sayed-Khaiyum says Pio Tikoduadua and the NFP Leader are now caught out for suggesting what was not happening.
Sayed-Khaiyum also told Pio Tikoduadua that he professes treacherous politics.
He then highlighted the story from a Bollywood movie in the 1980s where the late Kader Khan acted as the Opposition Leader and was telling a favourite reporter how to cover stories. Sayed-Khaiyum alleges that is what Biman Prasad and Fiji Times have conspired to do.
Prasad says he will comment later.
By Iva Danford
The President of the National Federation Party and MP Pio Tikoduadua says he left FijiFirst because he did not want to be a Yes Man, however the Minister for Infrastructure Jone Usamate says Tikoduadua may be lying now or may have lied before as he had earlier said that he had resigned due to health reasons.
While speaking during the 2020/2021 National Budget debate, Tikoduadua highlighted that he is glad that he quit after only 9 months, because his conscience could not allow him to serve two masters who were scratching each other’s backs while the nation and its people were being led up the garden path.
Jone Usamate says when Tikoduadua resigned in 2014, he made a public statement that it was due to his health conditions, but did not mention anything about the leadership of the Prime Minister or the Attorney General.
Tikoduadua also highlighted that he has in his possession an email allegedly given to him by the Prime Minister that was sent to him by the Attorney General on 15th December 2013.
He says the entire email contained the Attorney General’s concerns about the need to re-look at the GDP base after the figures released by the Fiji Bureau of Statistics estimated the 2012 growth to 1.7% when a growth of 2.2% was announced in the budget. Tikoduadua says he was the Permanent Secretary at the Prime Minister’s Office at the time. In that email the Attorney General is raising concern on how the GDP base is calculated by the Fiji Bureau of Statistics.
While responding to the allegations made by Tikoduadua, Usamate says he has read the email and there is nothing sinister being suggested in it but Tikoduadua is interpreting it to suit his own agenda.
Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum is expected to respond to these matters in his Right of Reply in parliament later this morning.
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