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Draunidalo suspended from Parliament


Jun 03, 2016 05:03:34 PM

Draunidalo suspended from Parliament Opposition Member of Parliament, Tupou Draunidalo has been suspended for the remainder of her term in Fiji’s Parliament.

The suspension which comes into immediate effect will see the Opposition with only 16 members as SODLEPA MP Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu also remains suspended.

An all-day debate on the motion to suspend the National Federation Party President took place in Parliament today after the Parliamentary Privileges Committee found that Draunidalo contravened Standing Orders by making offences remarks against Education Minister Dr Mahendra Reddy during Wednesday’s proceedings.

The Opposition strongly argued during the debate that the Speaker use her powers to make a judgement or that an amended motion be adopted as the substantive motion was very severe.

This however did not come to any avail as 28 parliamentarians voted in support of the motion while 16 voted against. 6 members did not vote.

An amended motion by Opposition MP Prem Singh for Draunidalo to withdraw her comment “dumb native”, to apologize to Dr Reddy, parliament and the people of Fiji and her suspension from parliament to be for a maximum period of 28 days was defeated as only 16 members voted in favour.

The Committee recommended that Draunidalo be immediately suspended for the remainder of the term and she must also formally apologise to Dr Reddy and the people of Fiji before leaving parliament.

It was also stated in the recommendation that Draunidalo’s apology format should also recognize that the Minister for Education did not in fact utter the words “dumb natives”.

During the period of her suspension, Draunidalo will not be allowed to enter the parliamentary precincts including the Opposition Office.

By Reginald Chandar


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