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Leawere retains seat in Parliament

 

Jun 08, 2015 09:40:27 PM

Leawere retains seat in Parliament Opposition Member of Parliament, Mikaele Leawere will retain his seat in Parliament after the High Court, sitting as the Court of Disputed Returns today ruled against the Attorney General’s petition which challenged his eligibility as a candidate to Parliament.

AG Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum in his petition had argued that any candidate who, after the elections, holds a public office is no longer eligible as a candidate for him or her to be considered as a Member of Parliament.

The petition claimed that Leawere was a public officer as he was employed by a Trade Union at the time of the vacancy when he had advised the Electoral Commission that he was available to take up the seat in Parliament which was left vacant after the death of Ratu Viliame Tagivetaua.

While delivering his judgment this evening, Judge Justice David Alfred stated that the Commission did not err in law while awarding the seat to Leawere and that Leawere was not wrong when he had advised the Commission that he was available to take up the vacant seat as he had already resigned from his post as Acting General Secretary of the Fijian Teachers Association.

SODELPA candidate Leawere was sworn in as a Member of Parliament during the first week of sitting in May together with FijiFirst party’s Jilila Kumar who replaced Dr Neil Sharma who resigned from Parliament and the party.

By Reginald Chandar
 

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