We may recall that the late Police Commissioner Andrew Hughes tried to get Frank Bainimarama arrested in New Zealand to avert the impending 2006 Coup. In a letter to his New Zeland counterpart, HOWARD BROAD, while asking Broad to reconsider his decision not to arrest Bainimarama, Hughes made some startling claims, including that the 'Shadowy Supporters' included Mahendra Chaudhry: 'The Commodore's intention is to appoint himself President and Commander in Chief (Fijileaks: We have decided not to publish the next line regarding Hughes' source)...His shadowy supporters' as I have referred to them publicly, will then be appointed to key positions. Ratu Epeli Ganilau as Minister for Home Affairs, Mahendra Chaudhry as Prime Minister, etc, etc.". We have not been able to verify Hughes allegations regarding Chaudhry as Bainimarama's Prime Minister
The Fiji Labour Party's Annual General Meeting will be another spectable in hero worshipping, with no one daring to tell Chaudhry: STEP DOWN.
He might have explained away his $2million in Australia but the truth is until it was revealed in 2008, he never told his party, his political disciples, nor the voters, 'Look, I have $2million in my private bank account, given to me from India, and if there is a repeat performance of 2000, I and my family will board a chartered flight and will be gone out of Fiji'. He also ran and joined the treasonous Bainimarama Interim Government as its Finance Minister, Sugar Minister - plus, plus, plus ministry - informing the former US Ambassador Larry Dinger that the Qarase Government (SDL-FLP multi-party government) was so corrupt that it had to be removed. In November, a month before the Bainimamrama coup, the Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase had offered Chaudhry the portfolios of deputy prime minister and minister of finance. Chaudhry dithered, demanding that for him to consider the offer, certain multi-party ground rules must be thrashed out. A month later Bainimarama executed his 5 December 2006 coup. ‘In a strange twist of destiny’, as Chaudhry put it, he later accepted from the military the portfolios that he had refused from a democratically elected Qarase's SDL government. After Chaudhry fell out with Frank Bainimarama and Aiyaz Kahiyum, he wants that very same Government removed in 2022. The following column by our Founding Editor-in-Chief in the Fiji Sun in 2006 remains as salient as it was years ago, except since 2014 the political landscape has slightly changed because of the 2013 Constitution and the D'Hondt Electoral System.
We cannot just keep rewarding COUPISTS and CURRENCY CONVICTS.
August 11, 2006, The Fiji Sun
Fiji Labour Party needs leadership change
In another country, the Leader of the Opposition after loosing a parliamentary election for the second time in his political career might have gracefully stepped down.
Even if the leader lost with a razor-thin minority, it is never prudent for him to cling onto the leadership.
Such a practice is disdainfully frowned upon in most democratic systems, except in Africa, where dictatorial leaders hold onto party leadership in the hope of capturing power at the next election.
On the other hand, if the twice-defeated party leader in a western-style democracy refuses to relinquish control, he is humiliatingly forced out of the Opposition office through a ‘palace coup’ by one or some of his colleagues, supporters, or by a potential challenger.