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ANALYSIS-Leakage Of Confidential Minutes A Breach: Speaker

Speaker of Parliament Dr Jiko Luveni says she will conduct an inquiry into the leakage of confidential minutes of a parliamentary business committee meeting on November 2 last year. There
20 May 2016 13:13
ANALYSIS-Leakage Of Confidential Minutes A Breach: Speaker
Dr Jiko Luveni

Speaker of Parliament Dr Jiko Luveni says she will conduct an inquiry into the leakage of confidential minutes of a parliamentary business committee meeting on November 2 last year.

There has been a clear breach of parliamentary rules, says Dr Luveni.

The minutes have been linked to the controversy over the removal of National Federation Party leader and MP Biman Prasad as chairman of the Public Accounts Committee.

In a press conference last week to explain his resignation from PAC, Mr Prasad surprised SODELPA MP Aseri Radrodro by asking whether he complained about his performance to the Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

In the latest development, Mick Beddoes, the former principal administration officer in the Opposition Office, has waded into the row by releasing excerpts of the minutes in question.

The minutes relate to discussions about PAC.

Dr Luveni said: “This is privileged information. It cannot be divulged. No one should expose what happens in the business committee meeting.

“It is a serious matter and I want the issue settled. Our legal people are in the west and they will look into it when they return,” she said.

Dr Luveni said she did not want to pre-empt the outcome of the investigations because this had happened for the first time.

Mr Beddoes had circulated the relevant minutes to SODELPA  and NFP MPs and officials via email.

He said: “While I have kept away from commenting on the issues surrounding the FijiFirst Government’s disgraceful decision to remove Professor Biman Prasad as chair of the Public Accounts Committee, I thought I should set the record straight in light of some comments in social media, including Fiji Leaks.  Hon A Radrodro, has referred to me  in this controversy.

“I confirm that in my final submission to a SODELPA disciplinary committee I referred to remarks to the Parliamentary Standing Orders Committee by the Attorney-General.

“He had referred to Hon Radrodro complaining to the FijiFirst side about Hon Biman Prasad’s chairmanship of the PAC.

“The source of my information were verbatim notes which I attach for your perusal.”

Both Mr Radrodro and Mr Sayed-Khaiyum have declined to comment.

Feedback:  nemani.delaibatiki@fijisun.com.fj

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