NFP account was in order and also signed by a chartered accountant certified by FIA plus he is CPA Australia. The practicing certificate is something else which he did not have and, as indicated by Suva lawyer Richard Naidu, there is no requirement in the Decree for that. So as far was NFP was concerned, they did the right thing!
* We cannot resist dragging in Mahendra Chaudhry and his accountant Nalin Patel, who is accused of misleading FRCA about the 'Haryana Millions', and yet both Khaiyum and Fiji Institute of Accountants (FIA) have taken no action against Patel, not to mention FICAC, Police and
the Director of Public Prosecutions
* And what about the Australian accountants Khaiyum brought in to whitewash his then interim Finance Minister Chaudhry's tax file - were these Aussies FIA certified? Their ruling, contradicted by the Fiji High Court, exposes Khaiyum's fanatical demand that NFP accountants should have practicing certificate from FIA.
NALIN PATEL had one and yet it did not stop him:
Good morning ladies and gentlemen
Thank you for being here so early.
As you are aware following much speculation in the media about allegations against the Finance Minister, Mr. Chaudhry, the Prime Minister took steps to clear the air on this issue once and for all.
Despite the clearance last year by FIRCA in a report to the Prime Minister, allegations by the media and certain, usual individuals against the Finance Minister and the Government continued.
So in the interest of transparency, good governance and to dispel any untruths the Prime Minister on his own initiative identified and set up a three member independent team to carry out an inquiry to yet again scrutinize Mr. Chaudhry’s tax details.
The team as you are also aware started its work on Friday morning.
The terms of reference for the team were:
1. To establish whether the tax assessment by FIRCA in respect of Mr. Chaudhry between 2000 and 2006 was carried out in accordance with the Income Tax Act and any other relevant tax laws of Fiji; and,
2. To establish whether there were any breaches of the Exchange Control Act by Mr. Chaudhry between 2000 and 2006 in relation to the tax assessment carried out by FIRCA.
The team was headed by Mr. Bruce Cowley. Mr. Cowley is a partner in the law firm of Minter Ellison in Brisbane Australia. He specializes in corporate law and governance. He is familiar with the laws in Fiji as he has carried out a number of assignments in Fiji since the SVT Government days. He is also a member of the International Bar Association.
The second member of the team was Mr. Russell Postle. Mr. Postle is a partner in the accounting firm of BDO Kendalls in Brisbane Australia. He is a tax specialist and is a member of the Forensic Accountants Special Group of the Institute of Accountants in Australia.
The third and final member of the team was Ms Taufa Vakatale. Ms Vakatale is an educationist, a former senior civil servant, a politician and was our first female Deputy Prime Minister. She is currently a member of the public accounts committee and a respected member of our community.
The team completed its assignment yesterday afternoon and handed the report to the Prime Minister late yesterday afternoon.
As the Prime Minister stated the independent inquiry team’s report would be made public in the interest of transparency, accountability and good governance.
This is what we are doing this morning.
The Prime Minister could have simply given you copies of the executive summary but he has decided to make available the entire report.
The executive summary addresses the many allegations that have been raised in the media.
The independent inquiry team has concluded that:
· ‘..the tax assessments by FIRCA in respect of Mr. Chaudhry between 2000 and 2006 were carried out in accordance with the Tax Act and other relevant laws of Fiji; and,
· The committee has not identified any breaches of the Exchange Control Act by Mr. Chaudhry between 2000-2006.
Let the Government make this very clear, this level of scrutiny and the fact that the findings into the confidential tax details of a Government member or any citizen of our country has been made public is unprecedented.
Yet, no previous Government, no previous Prime Minister has had the courage to do what this Government, what Prime Minister Bainimarama has done.
Yet, despite this initiative some people are still attempting to create doubts in the minds of the public about this Government’s genuine intentions to be totally fair, impartial and transparent.
The usual suspects were calling for investigations in Mr. Chaudhry’s tax details. Now that we have done this, the same people are making allegations about the inquiry, its scope and the respected and professional members of the team."