Duituturaga’s Appointment Rejected As It Doesn’t Meet Requirements In Suspended SODELPA’s Constitution

Mr Saneem also said suspended SODELPA still had not met requirements under its constitution.
19 Jun 2020 11:03
Duituturaga’s Appointment Rejected As It Doesn’t Meet Requirements In Suspended SODELPA’s Constitution
Newly-elected general secretary of the suspended SODELPA, Emele Duituturaga at Suva’s Holiday Inn on June 18, 2020. However, last night the Registrar of Political Parties Mohammed Saneem rejected Ms Duituturaga’s appointment. Photo: Ronald Kumar

The Registrar of Political Parties Mohammed Saneem does not recognise the newly-appointed general secretary Emele Duituturaga of the suspended SODELPA.

This is despite being appointed by the party’s (in suspension) election during a Management Board meeting at Holiday Inn Suva yesterday.

According to Mr Saneem, this is because the suspended party still had not met the requirements under its constitution in order for the suspension to be lifted.

Mr Saneem told Ms Duituturaga during a meeting at the Fijian Elections Office in Suva yesterday afternoon.

It comes after the party (in suspension) conducted its Management Board meeting earlier in the day, which saw a number of executive positions being filled .

Mr Saneem said the appointments had to be done through a nationally-recognised recruitment process and the successful applicant has to sign a Performance Agreement as stated in the party’s (in suspension) constitution.

Meanwhile, by 11 am yesterday, the Management Board meeting at the Holiday Inn Suva saw about 200 people sign in for the much-talked-about meeting.

Among them were top guns: Sitiveni Rabuka, Ratu Epenisa Cakobau, Ro Teimumu Kepa, Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu, Ms Duituturaga, Ms Waqanika, Aseri Radrodro, Mere Samisioni, Mosese Bulitavu, Bani Dunn, Ratu Antonio Rabici, Usaia Waqatairewa, Lynda Tabuya, Salote Radrodro, Inosi Kuridrani, Adi Litia Qionibaravi, Ro Filipe Tuisawau, Jope Koroisavou, Simione Rasova, Mitieli Bulanauca, Jese Saukuru, Peceli Rinakama and Anare Jale.

Party (in suspension) acting president, Vijay Singh, was the only member to join via Zoom. He is currently in Australia.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa



Why Saneem rejected the SODELPA submission

The above application was received by the Registrar this afternoon. Below is the Registrar’s decision on the said application:

I note that Ms Emele Sima Duituturaga was appointed Acting General Secretary at the Special Management Board meeting of the (Suspended) Party held at the Holiday Inn today (18 June 2020). The application is duly supported by the Office Holders of the Party.

The process for appointment of General Secretary is governed by section 18.3.1 of the SODELPA (In Suspension) Constitution. Section 18.3.1 states:

“The General Secretary shall be recruited under nationally recognized best practices on terms decided by the Management Board. He/She shall sign a Work Contract with the Management Board and shall deliver under a Performance Agreement to be signed with the Management Board.”

[Emphasis added]

It must be noted from the Constitution of SODELPA (In Suspension) that the Management Board does not have the powers to carry out direct appointment of the General Secretary nor does the Constitution provide for Acting appointments for General Secretary. The Constitution is clear on the process and the requirements that need to be met to appoint the General Secretary.

From the application received this afternoon, it is evident that the Party Management Board neglected and/or failed to ensure that it complies with section 18.3.1 of the SODELPA (In Suspension) Constitution.

In light of the above, I do not find that the appointment made at the Special Management Board meeting complied with section 18.3.1 of the Constitution of the Party.

Section 18.3.1(a) states that “the General Secretary of the Party is also the Authorised and Registered Officer of the Party.

“Having found that the appointment process of Ms Duituturaga failed to comply with the Party Constitution, I am unable to endorse the application by the Party to substitute the name of Ms Duituturaga as the Party Registered Officer under section 11 of the Political Parties (Registration, Conduct, Funding & Disclosures) Act, 2013.

The Application is therefore not approved and the Party is directed to comply with its Constitution in making the appointment.

The Party remains suspended as per earlier decision.

Source: Registrar of Political Parties


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