Letters

Letters February 15, 2015

Golden Triangle Dr Sushil K Sharma,  Suva The raids over the last few years, and then on a massive national scale this year, in and around the Nadroga, Tunuloa and
15 Feb 2015 08:36

Golden Triangle

Dr Sushil K Sharma,  Suva

The raids over the last few years, and then on a massive national scale this year, in and around the Nadroga, Tunuloa and Natewa in Vanua Levu and more recently Kadavu – points joining Southwest Viti Levu to Natewa Bay, Vanua Levu.

Also joined is the Island of Kadavu, South of Viti Levu and traversing back to the original point of Nadroga forming the new Golden Triangle of Fiji and the Pacific.

An area rife in massive scale cultivation, processing and the distribution of marijuana to both locals and tourists alike.

The scale of cultivation and the number of farms actively participating in this illegal activity, is only now being discovered by the authorities.

They appear to have only managed to discover and uproot amounts representing only the  tip of the ice-berg, literally.

Using the ice-berg analogy, this in fact means that only about 10 per cent of the illegal substance, has been discovered and uprooted, and synonymous to the iceberg, which is about 90 per cent submerged except the 10 per cent of the tip.

Fiji still has 90 per cent more illegal substance farms, gardens, plots, and pot-plants that it has not even made any inroads into –the pun is intended.

A nation is judged by the degree of compliance to it laws, which is often harder to gauge. However it is easier and more often than not, that the international community looks at the degree of lawlessness by the people of a country, and makes judgments on a nation’s status by its ability or inability to control crime.

A nation either condoning or unable to control or curb illegal activities, like prostitution, illegal drug trade and trafficking, human rights abuses, instability, lack of any respect for the culture and traditions are often used to judge a nation’s credibility towards the degree of good governance.

Fiji is in great danger of losing its name unless the scale of abuse towards the marijuana cultivation, processing and distribution is controlled completely and the trade in it completely stopped by whatever legislative and enforcement strategies.

Not doing so will slowly sink our reputation to that of countries like Myanmar and Thailand for example, where people visit these nations, part of sex and drug tourism.

This is not the time to waste energy and debate on the rights and wrongs of marijuana, whether it should be legalised or not, but for enforcement authorities to deal with all issues to the full hilt of the law as it exists today.

Our legislators also need to reform the present laws, and enact harsher punishments and deterrence to ensure that a person has to think a number of times before even thinking about marijuana cultivation and sale for their income, instead of kava, taro, sugarcane and the like.

It is rumored that some people from the Highlands were in fact bringing money literally in sacks and emptying it on the floor of some shops, for their purchase. This type of condoning of illegal activity by the businesses is not right, and not in the national interest, and needs to be curtailed by ensuring that they also spend a very long time in jail for using the proceeds of crime.

Coup makers

Amenatave Yaconisau,  Delainavesi

Its unfortunate that despite all the coups that has taken place in this country there seems to be no consitutional redress to discourage future coup makers.

However, emphasis  must be put on the fact that immunity only covers the period up to the election in September 2014 beyond which any illegal action faces the full brunt of the law(147)(h) of the 2013 Constitution.

There are definitely other factors apart from the removal of the death sentence that encourages any coup maker.

Neglect in the distribution of government resources is a definite motivation.  Increase in allocation probably reduces this pro-coupe direction.  It gives the prestige, respect and facilities  they want.

George Speight

Akhalid Ahmad, Suva

Why are some people asking mercy for people like George Speight who has tortured our motherland to the maximum. Are they in the Parliament to bring criminals out or stop criminals? Mr NFP leader, do you support getting out criminals like George Speight? Please answer?

Golden Triangle

Susana Tuisawau, Suva

We have been privileged to watch our televised parliamentary debate. Unfortunately, some sessions of late had thrown some very negative light on some of our leaders.

These  had shown  that our two top leaders of  Government tend to show a lack of decorum and respect for others but themselves in parliament and which had also continued outside of parliament when making public speeches.

I congratulate  the  Government Leader of the House , Pio Tikoduadua  for the way he conducts himself and shows mutual respect for both sides of the House when dealing with issues which he had often tried to do with objectivity.

Many of the Government team also  show decorum, respect and professionalism when dealing with counter views or questions.

Sadly, we have never come across a Prime Minister in Fiji’s history who is always so blatant and ruthless in putting  down  the past leaders before him and his current opposition the way our current Prime Minister has done  since 2006. He is always criticising past politicians that it seems to be an obsession. By doing  so, he is in essence, politicising all issues in his speeches inside parliament and outside it.  The Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance do not seem able to embrace any question or suggestion put to them by the Opposition without reading negative political motives into every suggestion that they make unnecessary , long-winding,  time – consuming  attacks on the Opposition first.

These do not reflect the political maturity, self-confidence or  professionalism which  some members on both sides of the House often model. Leaders need to be open-minded or perhaps man enough, to  take  counter views unruffled and see what positive outcomes they can  make out of all suggestions given.

 




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