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Analysis: Poll Tickets Heat Up

Adi Litia Qionibaravi’s expression of interest to contest the 2018 general election has revealed a fierce internal battle for SODELPA tickets. There are campaigns going on behind the scenes and
19 Aug 2017 11:00
Analysis: Poll Tickets Heat Up
L-R: Alipate Qetaki. Jiosefa Dulakiverata, Ro Kiniviliame Kiliraki, Adi Litia Qionibaravi.

Adi Litia Qionibaravi’s expression of interest to contest the 2018 general election has revealed a fierce internal battle for SODELPA tickets.

There are campaigns going on behind the scenes and lobbying within the party hierarchy in SODELPA-style primaries.

It is estimated that there are at least two candidates for each of the 51 seats in Parliament.

The applications were sent to the party’s management board.

The board then divided them into the 14 provinces where they come from including some urban areas.

The names have been sent to the Provincial Constituency Councils for vetting and recommendations. The councils’ recommendations are then forwarded to the board which will make the final selection.

It seems like a cumbersome process but it is designed to ensure a widely representative system and peaceful process.

While it may look calm on the surface, there are strong undercurrents of rivalry among prospective candidates.

In Tailevu, for example, the revelation that Adi Litia is interested to contest the election has surprised and upset some people.

They think that Adi Litia is not supposed to stand as a candidate because she is the party’s general secretary who is privy to confidential internal issues and there could be a matter of conflict of interest.

It is expected that SODELPA will contest all 51 seats. All the big provinces like Tailevu and Naitasiri are likely to contribute four candidates each.

In Tailevu names that are being bandied about are: sitting MP Jiosefa Dulakiverata, suspended MP Ratu Isoa Tikoca, Ratu Rabici Seniloli from Bau and Alipate Qetaki, former general manager of the iTaukei Land Trust Board.

The four names that are likely to go through are: Mr Dulakiverata, Ratu Isoa, Mr Qetaki and Adi Litia.

In Naitasiri, the following have been mentioned in SODELPA circles:  Sitting MPs Aseri Radrodro and Ro Kiniviliame Kiliraki; Eseromi Bayameyame, Anne Nacola and Peceli Rinakama.

The front-runners are Mr Radrodro and Ro Kiniviliame. They have been working hard in their province.

The other two could be Eseromi Bayameyame and Anne Nacola. Not far behind is Mr Rinakama.

Feedback:  nemani.delaibatiki@fijisun.com.fj

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