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Ethnicity Obsession ‘Will Kill Our Country’

Ethnicity Obsession ‘Will Kill Our Country’
Attorney-General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum at the Budget Roadshow in Savusavu on August 13, 2018. Photo: Shratika Naidu
August 14
12:11 2018

Attorney-General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has said people who campaign using race and religion have nothing to offer to people.

This was very well received by those present at an area where National Federation Party leader Biman Prasad hails from, Dreketi, Macuata Province.

Anil Prasad requested Mr Sayed-Khaiyum before a gathering at Fiji Rice Limited if he could do something about those people who still continue to racial discrimination.

“Can we do something about this or stop people from spreading lies as such,” Mr Prasad said.

“I work in Viti Levu and recently came to my home in Tabia, Labasa, and in two separate occasions, at mandali and at a grog gathering some people were talking about this Government and racism and I felt really bad.”

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum replied saying someone at a national budget roadshow in Savusavu on the same day raised a similar question about racism.

“It is funny and quite a bit sad,” Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said.

“We have reached 21st century.

“We got out of the colonial days and Girmit days; everyone wanted a common identity and now because of few politicians everybody is saying Muslims, Mandaraji, Gujarati and so on.

“No body till today has given a single evidence to say that somebody is taking over.”

“In all the policies we had did we say that south Indians will get more for their babies or Muslims will get more for their babies,” he questioned.

“Last year someone said FijiFirst party should be called MM (Muslim, Mandaraji) Party and some place someone this year said it should be called MGM (Muslim, Gujarati and Mandaraji) party.

“Give me one simple evidence where there has been discrimination on any religious or ethnic group.

“When we appoint people we appoint them on merit

“I have worked for the honourable Prime Minister since 2007.

“Not one single time he has said to me, ‘oh I want  people of iTaukei or more of this particular group’.

“He always said when you appoint a person can he get the job done or not. Can you do the job or not.

“This obsession of ethnicity will kill our country.

“Of course, we got over the Indian and Fijian thing.

“Now, of course, this Hindu and Muslim thing going on.

“In the last election has any single millimetre of iTaukei land lost?

“If for example, if your son gets sick and he needs surgery; If you are a south Indian will you say you need a south Indian doctor or you will say I need the best doctor to save my son’s life.

“Or I am from Savusavu and I need a doctor from Savusavu. You will say I will need the best doctor.

“So please focus on the economy.”

Edited by Jyoti Pratibha

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