Analysis

Analysis: Why Shoot the Messenger? FBC Did What All Media Houses Would Have

Instead of believing him, the FBC management decided that this man needed to provide evidence before he would be taken seriously.
17 Jun 2020 13:15
Analysis: Why Shoot the Messenger? FBC Did What All Media Houses Would Have
From left: Vinal Raj – FBC manager TV operations, Shammi Lochan – FBC manager Radio, Riyaz Sayed-Khaiyum – FBC chief executive officer, and Vijendra Kumar – FBC manager sales and marketing. Photo: Ilaijia Ravuwai

Analysis:

When a man claiming to be the face behind a Facebook page, which has systematically and strategically attempted to incite racial disharmony and cause political instability in Fiji turns up at the doorstep of a media house, it would, of course, be newsworthy.

The Fijian Broadcasting Corporation (FBC) was approached by a man claiming to be a hacker and administrator of the notorious Fiji Exposed Forum on February 6.

He claimed that he was paid by politicians from various opposition political parties. He walked off the street and volunteered information. The FBC did not go looking for him. This is why the FBC was extremely sceptical of his allegations and wanted further proof.

Instead of believing him, the FBC management decided that this man needed to provide evidence before he would be taken seriously.

Some of the claims he made, the people he named in a statutory declaration he filled out and signed voluntarily in the presence of only a lawyer and not in the presence of anyone from FBC, are serious.

He also willingly agreed to be recorded while making his allegations to the FBC management.

So, instead of shooting the messenger, and threatening FBC with lawsuits, these political parties, businessman, politicians need to ask this man a few hard-hitting questions and of course, if it’s not true, should be suing him.

Why is this making news?

Fiji Exposed Forum over the years defamed hundreds of hard-working Fijians. The Forum spread deliberate misinformation, attempted to incite racial tensions, went on a witch hunt against hard-working Fijians.

There are many in the country who want to sue the administrators of this page, which is no longer hosted on Facebook. So, when a man is willing to identify himself as one of the administrators, it is, of course, a big deal.

When the FBC demanded that he provided the management with evidence to back the allegations, he asked for recording devices.

This personally reminds me of a certain Mr Foster who had also bitten off more than he could chew.

The FBC did not sit on this information. They gave the man a timeline, he failed to deliver what he claimed he had, within a month, every evidence, the statutory declaration and all his voice recordings were handed over to the Police. The Police then started their investigations into this matter about two months ago.

Was this man lying? Why is FBC being threatened with lawsuits?

In a recording, which has since surfaced on Facebook, this man once again claimed he was paid tens of thousands of dollars by politicians. Is this illegal? Maybe not. Is it immoral? Likely, if true.

The bigger question is whether this expense was declared to the Registrar of Political Parties in the political parties’ declaration? If it was, how was it declared?

When FBC held a press conference on Sunday, it decided to release this man’s statutory declaration and voice recordings to the media for the first time. The FBC did this only after this man posted allegations against the FBC a day before.

Shooting the messenger will not get people anywhere right now.

Finding out whether there is any truth in this man’s claims would be a good start.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedbackjyotip@fijisun.com.fj

Fijisun E-edition
Total Excellium
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper