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Arrest Scam Artists, Says PM

Arrest Scam Artists, Says PM
Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.
January 10
10:00 2019

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama says con artists should be arrested.

He was responding to claims that a group of women have been travelling around the country taking money in return for promising jobs overseas.

The group has been soliciting money from the people in Fiji using the Prime Minister’s name, the latest instance was at a meeting in Nadroga during which promises of overseas jobs were made.

Speaking to the Fiji Sun, retired soldier Simione Qasevakatini said the group that met villagers at Kubuna Village, Lomawai, Nadroga, included four men and a woman.

“The lady leading the so-called recruitment drive was addressed as ‘Nau Poli’. She told us that our departure was going to happen sooner rather than later. She even told us that a chartered Fiji Airways flight was going to take us to the US,” he said.

“What surprised me the most was when she mentioned Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama. She said the PM was aware of what they were doing.”

Mr Qasevakatini said they were promised 10-year contracts and that they would return to Fiji as millionaires.

Mr Qasevakatini later reported the matter to the Ministry of Labour in Sigatoka, which confirmed that the group was scamming people around the country

Speaking about the meeting, he said the group arrived at the village at about 2am and was greeted by Lomaiwai and Kubuna villagers at the Kubuna Village hall.

At least 30 people signed up for the promised overseas promise – 10 from Kubuna and 20 from Lomawai Village.

“All had to pay $55 and filled a two-page form, which required our personal details including our work experience,” Mr Qasevakatini said.

He said the mood in the hall was jovial and people stayed on until the morning to fill their forms.

“We were promised work in the United States of America, Hawaii, Canada and Dubai.

“They informed us that employment opportunities were available as farmhands, caregivers, security officers and hotel workers,” he said.

Meanwhile, it has been revealed that a director of the company that has been listed as the recruitment agency was charged with recruiting workers without any authorisation as per Section 37 (4) and (5) of the Employment Relations Act 2007 last year.

The official was convicted of the offence and fined $3000.

However, despite the successful prosecution, the official has been seen among the group undertaking the recruitment drive.

Edited by Epineri Vula


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