NEWS

Fiji Sun on Fiji Airways flights A Commercial Decision, MPs Told

Having Fiji Sun as the only newspaper on Fiji Airways flights was a commercial decision by the airline, Parliament was told yesterday. But Acting Prime Minister, Attorney-General and Minister for
24 May 2017 11:00
Fiji Sun on Fiji Airways flights A Commercial Decision, MPs Told
Fiji Airways plane 'Island of Koro'. Photo: Ronald Kumar

Having Fiji Sun as the only newspaper on Fiji Airways flights was a commercial decision by the airline, Parliament was told yesterday.

But Acting Prime Minister, Attorney-General and Minister for Civil Aviation Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said passengers were allowed to take any reading material onboard except pornography.

He was responding to a question by National Federation Party Opposition MP, Parmod Chand.

Mr Chand asked why passengers on Fiji Airways flights were denied complimentary readership of the Fiji Times.

In response, Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said: “Madam Speaker the reality is Fiji Airways is a limited liability company, they make their own procurement decisions – that is the shorter answer to that,” he said.

He said some airlines carried one complimentary newspaper onboard because of weight restrictions.

SODELPA Opposition MP Niko Nawaikula claimed that according to the Fiji Airways staff that the directive came from the Government.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum replied with a stern voice “Can you confirm who told you that we gave that directive?”

Speaker to Parliament, Dr Jiko Luveni then told Mr Nawaikula to come up with valid questions in Parliament.

“Madam Speaker, the Honourable Member has stood in this House and said that he can lie, how do I know what he is saying is the truth?” Mr Sayed-Khaiyum responded.

Dr Luveni said she refused that the question be further discussed in Parliament.

NFP Leader and Opposition MP, Biman Prasad sought clarification whether Government provided money to Fiji Airways.

He said it was Government’s role that Fijians were not discriminated and that the discrimination of the newspaper was discrimination on the people of this country.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said Mr Prasad’s points were irrelevant.

“Madam Speaker, I didn’t say it is a private company, it’s a limited liability company- there is a point of difference.

“Fiji Airways is 51 per cent-owned by the Fijian Government but the Ministry of Economy officials from Government don’t sit on the board, they have an independent board,” he said.

If the Opposition were familiar with corporate governance, Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said they would know Fiji Airways had their own constitution and all the decisions were made by the board.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedback: arieta.vakasukawaqa@fijisun.com.fj

Fijisun E-edition
Tanoa Plaza Hotel Suva
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
error: