NEWS

Litiana Kuridrani Relieved Of Director Role Pending An Investigation

Filipe Bainivalu was not entirely satisfied with the decision and how the university had handled the matter.
21 Jul 2019 11:22
Litiana Kuridrani Relieved Of Director Role Pending An Investigation
University of Fiji Justice Devendra Pathik School of Law Students Association President Filipe Bainivalu (front, second from right) with fellow law students at the University Samabula Campus in Suva. Photo: Ronald Kumar

University of Fiji’s senior academic, Litiana Kuridrani, has been relieved of her position as Director for the Centre of iTaukei Studies, pending an investigation, a review panel has ruled.

The decision was made after an independent committee was appointed to investigate a complaint against Ms Kuridrani for allegedly making racist remarks against a student.

However, she will continue to be employed by the university as an academic.

Filipe Bainivalu, the president of the UniFiji Justice Devendra Pathik School of Law Students Association, had provided email evidence that Ms Kuridrani in the iTaukei vernacular said he should not bark like an Indian dog

Yesterday, Mr Bainivalu revealed he received a letter from the Acting Vice Chancellor, Anurag Subramani, stating that as per the recommendation of the review panel, Ms Kuridrani had been relieved of her position.

However, Mr Bainivalu was not entirely satisfied with the decision and how the university had handled the matter.

“The investigative committee that had been appointed to investigate the case was called independent, but it had people from the university’s Saweni Campus,” he said.

“It was a direct conflict of interest because they were colleagues of Dr Kuridrani.”

He also said the report that was compiled after reviewing the case was not tabled to him.

Mr Bainivalu stood firm on his earlier affirmations that Ms Kuridrani should be terminated.

Ms Kuridrani, after a few heated exchanges with Mr Bainivalu via email, stated: “Muria nomu iyatu (follow protocol or the line of authority)…kalawaci ga na kau (you only walk over wood). Kua ni kodro tiko mai vaka na koli ni Idia (do not bark like an Indian dog) kauti iko mai kei na nomu matabose ki Saweni (bring your group to Saweni) so that we can have face-to-face dialogue.

Mr Bainivalu responded by stating “regrettable, I have noted with protest my sheer disappointment on its contents bordering on racism and harassment. It cannot go unchallenged.”

Ms Kuridrani then replied saying the iTaukei words she used were an iTaukei idiom.

Ms Kuridrani is the wife of SODELPA Member of Parliament, Inosi Kuridrani.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

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