October 26th 2016
FIJI BROADCASTING COMMISSION CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER AND BOARD MEMBERS MUST BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR BREACHING SECTIONS 17 & 26 OF THE CONSTITUTION
The Minister for Justice and Attorney General, the Chairman of MIDA and the Police must immediately and jointly act, and bring to account, Riyaz Saiyad Khaiyum as the CEO of the entity and the Chairman and Board of FBC, responsible for this disgraceful and deliberate display of arrogance and hate.
Sec 17 (2) of the 2013 Constitution clearly states that there is no protection from (a) Propaganda for war; (b) incitement to violence or insurrection against this constitution; or (c) advocacy of hatred that (i) is based on any prohibited ground of discrimination listed or prescribed under section 26 and (ii) constitutes incitement to cause harm.
Sec 26 Right to equality and freedom from discrimination, states in (1) Every person is equal before the law and has the right to equal protection, treatment and benefit of the law. (3) A person must not be unfairly discriminated against directly or indirectly on the grounds of his or her
(a) Actual or supposed personal characteristics, or circumstances, including race, culture, ethnic or social origins, colour, place of origin, sex, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, birth, primary language, economic or social or health status, disability, age, religion, conscience, marital status or pregnancy or
(b) Opinions or beliefs, except to the extent that those opinions or beliefs involve harm to others or the diminution of the rights or freedoms of others.
The outrageous allegations against our indigenous people by FBC suggesting we are inferior because we spend too much time on sports, and are academically poor performers because we cannot read English and teachers are too drunk on yaqona.
This is in clear breach of Sec 26 and in particular the provisions I have outlined. Under the circumstances, Nemani Bainivalu’s official apology is of no consequence.
Three indigenous members of Parliament were expelled and TheFijiTimes Editor and its Executives charged for far less racist or inciteful comments than the FBC sponsored direct attack on our indigenous people’s race, culture, status and other values protected under Sec 26.
I call on the CEO of FBC to take responsibility and resign from his position and allow a full and unimpeded investigation to be carried out and all the officials associated with the program taken to account.
Authorised by Hon. Ro Teimumu Vuikaba Kepa
Leader of Opposition