World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Fiji PM defends Vayeshnoi on radio decision


SUVA: Fiji Islands Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhry said media ethics had been breached in the presentation of a radio programme, the Sunday Times reports.

He defended the decision by Assistant Information Minister Lekh Ram Vayeshnoi to remove [Daily Post general manager] Thakur Ranjit Singh, the volunteer host of a bi-weekly programme on [the Hindustani-language] Radio Fiji Two, Tanik Hamari Bhi Suno.

Chaudhry said Vayeshnoi's decision was commendable as Singh had violated media ethics in the programme.

He also criticised the stand taken by the Pacific Islands News Association (PINA) president, William Parkinson, on the issue.

"Parkinson should know journalistic ethics and very clearly Ranjit Singh has violated these ethics," said Chaudhry.

PINA had urged the government to refrain from interfering with Radio Fiji prograjmmes if the national broadcaster was to play its critical role in providing the people of Fiji with the information they needed to participate fully as citizens in a democracy.

Fiji Broadcasting Corporation Ltd chairman Daniel Whippy yesterday apologised to the South Indian residents of Labasa who might have been offended by Singh's comments.

"As chairman of the FBC, I have responded swiftly to complaints made directly to me by both the Government and other citizens of Fiji who are unhappy with Singh's comments," said Whippy.

"Singh's comments are personal and not that of the FBCL."

Singh expressed shock at the Government's decision.

"I feel that I have been stripped naked of my constitutional right - which is the right of freedom of speech," he said.

Singh said he had been a frequent contributor to the open column in the dailies.

The Fiji Times said in an editorial: "No matter how hard it tries, the Government cannot justify taking Mr Singh off the air. Voters did not give the Government a mandate to do as it pleases.

The Government's insensitivity to criticism has already lead to threats of regulating the media, revamping the Media Council and public attacks on the media at every opportunity.

"Now, it has crossed the line and introduced censorship."


PACIFIC MEDIA WATCH is an independent, non-profit, non-government organisation comprising journalists, lawyers, editors and other media workers, dedicated to examining issues of ethics, accountability, censorship, media freedom and media ownership in the Pacific region. Launched in October 1996, it has links with the Journalism Program at the University of the South Pacific, Bushfire Media, the Australian Centre for Independent Journalism, and Pactok Communications, in Sydney and Port Moresby.

(c)1996-2000 Copyright - All rights reserved.

Items are provided solely for review purposes as a non-profit educational service. Copyright remains the property of the original producers as indicated. Recipients should seek permission from the copyright owner for any publishing. Copyright owners not wishing their materials to be posted by PMW please contact us. The views expressed in material listed by PMW are not necessarily the views of PMW or its members.

Recipients should rely on their own inquiries before making decisions based on material listed in PMW. Please copy appeals to PMW and acknowledge source.

For further information, inquiries about joining the Pacific Media Watch

listserve, articles for publication, and giving feedback contact Pacific

Media Watch at: E-mail: or: Fax: (+679) 30 5779 or (+612) 9660 1804 Mail: PO Box 9, Annandale, NSW 2038, Australia or, c/o Journalism, PO Box 1168, Suva, Fiji Website:

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Haiti: $5 Million To Kick-Start Aid In Wake Of Hurricane Matthew

UN emergency fund allocates $5 million to kick-start assistance in wake of Hurricane Matthew More>>


Not Helen Clark: António Guterres Favourite For Next UN Secretary-General

Former Portuguese Prime Minister António Guterres has emerged as the clear favourite to become the next United Nations Secretary-General following the sixth secret ballot held today by the UN Security Council, which is expected to take a formal decision tomorrow and forward Mr. Guterres’ name to the 193-Member General Assembly for final confirmation. More>>


Preliminary Results: MH17 Investigation Report

The Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is convinced of having obtained irrefutable evidence to establish that on 17 July 2014, flight MH-17 was shot down by a BUK missile from the 9M38-series. According to the JIT there is also evidence identifying the launch location that involves an agricultural field near Pervomaiskyi which, at the time, was controlled by pro-Russian fighters. More>>


At The UN: Paris Climate Agreement Moves Closer To Entry Into Force

The Paris Agreement on climate change moved closer toward entering into force in 2016 as 31 more countries joined the agreement today at a special event hosted by United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The End Game In Spain (And Other World News)

The coverage of international news seems almost entirely dependent on a random selection of whatever some overseas news agency happens to be carrying overnight... Here are a few interesting international stories that have largely flown beneath the radar this past week. More>>

Amnesty/Human Rights Watch: Appalling Abuse, Neglect Of Refugees On Nauru

Refugees and asylum seekers on Nauru, most of whom have been held there for three years, routinely face neglect by health workers and other service providers who have been hired by the Australian government, as well as frequent unpunished assaults by local Nauruans. More>>


Other Australian Detention

Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news