5 New Proposed Parties Apply To Reserve Names
The Fijian Elections Office has received applications to reserve names of five new proposed political parties.
The Supervisor of Elections, Mohammed Saneem, confirmed the proposed names yesterday. But he could not provide details.
The next step would be for the proposed parties to fulfill certain requirements including the obtaining of 5000 signatures of people endorsing them before they could be considered for registration.
It is understood that the Be the Change Party could be modelled along the same lines as the platform of Roshika Deo, who stood as an independent candidate in the 2014 general election, but failed to win a seat.
Be the Change was her slogan, calling for gender balance, equality and more youth voice. Don’t be surprised if she is the driver of this proposed party.
The proposed Nationalist Party could take on either of two forms. One could be like the late Sakeasi Butadroka’s now defunct Fijian Nationalist Party that is pro-iTaukei and seeks iTaukei political supremacy or a party that passionately fights and defends anything Fijian.
The proposed two Christian-based parties demonstrate the extreme feelings that exist among some sections of the Christian fraternity.
While some are beginning to understand the meaning and positive implications of a secular state, others are firmly entrenched in their belief that Fiji should be a Christian state.
They are behind the bid for a Christian state. Whether they are acting individually or as a church group will be know later. But the president of the Methodist Church in Fiji, Reverend Tevita Banivanua, is on record as saying that Methodists should accept the secular state which guarantees everyone the freedom to practise their own religion as long as they do not impose it on others.
The Fijian Alliance Party is understood to be a multiracial group trying to resurrect the old spirit of the defunct Alliance Party led by the late Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara.
Disillusioned members of existing political parties could be behind this group.
If they all get registered, the five proposed political parties will bring to 12 the number of parties registered to contest the 2018 general election.
The existing parties are: the Fiji Labour Party, Fiji United Freedom Party, People’s Democratic Party, National Federation Party, SODELPA and FijiFirst.
If more parties enter the election race, they will split the votes to the benefit of the FijiFirst government. They also show that the interest in the next election is high.
That’s positive and great for our young democracy.
The five are:
1) Proposed Be The Change Party
2) Proposed Nationalist Party
3) Proposed Christian Democratic Party
4) Proposed Fijian Alliance Party
5) Proposed New Christian Democratic Party