Analysis | Politics

SODELPA Split Contributes To Lack Of Co-ordination In Opposition Response To Budget Debate

This debate was one of the worst performances by the Opposition. Many of its MPs wanted a change of Government but offered no realistic alternatives. They were hellbent on writing off this Budget that they paid little attention to what the country needs now and moving forward.
01 Aug 2020 11:02
SODELPA Split Contributes To Lack Of Co-ordination In Opposition Response To Budget Debate

Analysis:

The damage caused by the split in SODELPA was evident in the Opposition response to the 2020-2021 National Budget this week.

While its MPs had a pre-Budget debate briefing to discuss their line of response overall it was all over the place due to lack of co-ordination.

One of the few contributions worthy of recognition was by Aseri Radrodro. It was no surprise because of his professional background and experience as a chartered accountant and business manager.

Many of the MPs resorted to the Holy Bible to lend weight to their arguments, but when it came to the substance of the debate, there was little they could offer except to follow the favourite tactic of attacking the Budget and the minister responsible.

This debate was one of the worst performances by the Opposition. Many of its MPs wanted a change of Government but offered no realistic alternatives. They were hellbent on writing off this Budget that they paid little attention to what the country needs now and moving forward.

Do they have to wait for two years before they can contribute positively? What if FijiFirst wins a third term, which is most likely, will they continue with this strategy?

They are not doing themselves any favour with their current negative stance.

Many of them may be unaware that Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and Attorney-General and Minister for Economy Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum are reaching out to some of their colleagues because of their contributions. They are listening and responding to recommendations that will enhance Government services to the people in terms of infrastructure development and basic necessities like water, housing and electricity. This positive relationship is fostered away from the glare of the media and in informal settings.

That will grow as long as there is that element of trust, respect and dignity in a spirit of reciprocity.

At the end of the day, the winners are the people because their plight is being addressed. It’s the best example of bipartisanship – not just talking but doing something about it.

For SODELPA, it has an immediate need – it must set its house in order first before it can start thinking about winning the next election. The poor Budget response manifests it.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

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