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FijiFirst man quits over criminal record


May 08, 2014 01:05:30 PM

FijiFirst man quits over criminal record Proposed FijiFirst party vice president Bijai Prasad has resigned after it was revealed he had a criminal record.

Prasad announced he was resigning during a press conference in Nadi this morning, but said he will continue to support the proposed FijiFirst party.

Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry had revealed earlier this week that Prasad was convicted and jailed for larceny and conversion as an Air Terminal Services employee in 1982.

The revelation and Prasad's stepping down is the first major political blow for the proposed FijiFirst party and its leader and current Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama, who is campaigning for the September general election, on a giving Fiji a clean untainted government.

Chaudhry had said Prasad is the last person to be questioning the integrity of others, after Prasad had questioned the FLP's record and told FijiLive they had no chance of winning the election.

“I am the least bit bothered by Bijai Prasad’s comments. But he should be the last person to question the integrity of others. On money matters he should look at his own record - Bijai Prasad was convicted and jailed for larceny and conversion as an employee of ATS,” he said.

Prasad said the party was not aware of his record when they submitted their application to the Supervisor of Elections Mohammed Saneem on Monday when registering.

"We spoke about my record afterwards and we thought that it was in the best interest of the party that I step down," he said.

"I will continue to offer my support, but not in an official capacity. I had to step down to ensure the proposed party's record is clean."

Chaudhry had also said Prasad was also not telling the truth about why he quit the FLP.

Chaudhry, who was Finance Minister at the time Prasad left, said Prasad was in a huff over disagreements about his (Chaudhry) not giving certain approvals on some land deals in Nadi.

He said Prasad was then suspended from the FLP in 2008 for making derogatory remarks against the party leadership at an FLP branch meeting in Nadi.

Chaudhry said Prasad never raised any issues on money raised overseas with him.



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