Analysis | Opinion

ANALYSIS: What Will NFP Leader Prasad Do?

During a press conference on March 2, National Fed­eration Party leader Biman Prasad, issued a challenge to pro­vide evidence showing any NFP member inciting hate against the Muslim and South
06 Mar 2018 11:09
ANALYSIS: What Will NFP Leader Prasad Do?
National Federation Party leader, Biman Prasad.

During a press conference on March 2, National Fed­eration Party leader Biman Prasad, issued a challenge to pro­vide evidence showing any NFP member inciting hate against the Muslim and South Indian commu­nities.

Three people have come forward. They were at a meeting in Vunivu­tu, outside of Labasa, where NFP sitting Member of Parliament and candidate for the 2018 general elec­tions, Parmod Chand, allegedly said a lot of things, very damaging to race relations in Fiji, given our volatile past.

A couple, Hemand Prasad and wife Sunita Devi, and farmer Sub­hash Chand, were at the meeting where Mr Chand allegedly said there would be another coup if the FijiFirst party won the upcoming general election.

He is also alleged to have said that the current Government was a Government of Muslims and South Indians, among other things.

He also was said to have claimed that Fiji had debts from Iran and Iraq, which would lead to Fiji be­coming a Muslim state.

The three people who spoke on re­cord are willing to speak to Police and will no doubt say what they have already told the Fiji Sun.

But, what will the NFP leader do now? Will he tell all Fijians that NFP does not endorse these senti­ments? Or will he turn a blind eye to this? Will he investigate the mat­ter further or will he believe Mr Chand over these Fijians who gath­ered their courage to speak out? Will Mr Prasad remain silent?

If Police decide to investigate this and if a team heads out to Vunivu­tu, more people will no doubt come out and reveal what they heard Mr Chand say.

There were 40 people in the meet­ing. The three people who spoke out were just a tip of the ice berg. There are many others who heard Mr Chand speak and a thorough investigation will reveal who said what.

Will the NFP leader cover up for his MP? Did he even take the three Fijians seriously? Why should it matter to anyone if an NFP MP is allegedly spreading lies? Because Fiji has had a volatile past where race relations had been twisted by scrupulous politicians and some Fijians had to pay with their lives. It should matter to us and Fijians have every right to speak out when this happens. And, Fijians are speaking out now.

But is the NFP leader listening? Or is this propaganda going to help him gain a few more votes? Given his dismal performance in recent polls, he is no doubt feeling the heat.

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