Politics

Ashneel Sudhakar Resigns From FijiFirst Party, Prime Minister Bainimarama Confirms

This happened two days after he was dismissed as a Cabinet minister by Mr Bainimarama as per section 92 of the Constitution.
16 Mar 2020 10:38
Ashneel Sudhakar Resigns From FijiFirst Party, Prime Minister Bainimarama Confirms
Ashneel Sudhakar.

Former Minister for Lands Ashneel Sudhakar has resigned from the FijiFirst Party says party leader and Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.

This happened two days after he was dismissed as a Cabinet minister by Mr Bainimarama as per section 92 of the Constitution.

Amidst allegations of alleged misconduct and sexual harassment, Mr Sudhakar was asked by the party to step down. He refused to resign from his ministerial portfolio and party membership.

Mr Bainimarama, in exercising his constitutional powers, dismissed Mr Sudhakar on Friday March 13, 2020.

According to the Constitution, section 63 subsection 2, FijiFirst now needs to notify the Speaker of the House.

Then only the seat occupied by Mr Sudhakar will be declared as vacant.

Section 64, subsection 1 of the Constitution states that once the seat has been declared as vacant, the Electoral Commission must award the seat to the candidate of the same party, who in the most recent general election, is the most highest rank of the party, but did not get elected to Parliament and is still available to serve at the time of the vacancy.

According to the last election results, this incumbent is Faiyaz Koya.

Attorney-General and FijiFirst party general secretary Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum had said: “The party was dealing with the matter not from a criminal perspective but from a matter of expectant standard of behaviour required of a public officer holder, in particular, a minister and also an MP.”

He confirmed that there were other complainants against Mr Sudhakar, however, they were not forthcoming.

Meanwhile, Mr Sudhakar has strongly denied the allegation and threatened legal action.

Efforts to get comments from Mr Sudhakar, including a visit to his home in Ba were unsuccessful.

Edited by Ivamere Nataro

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