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Chaudhry hits out at fear tactic

Chaudhry hits out at fear tactic
Issue No: 1035 24 August 2001

Elected Prime Minister and the Leader of the Fiji Labor Party, Mahendra Chaudhry has hit out at feat tactics and racism resorted to by political parties to win the election.

A Daily Post report yesterday stated:

Indians in Fiji have been intimidated and denied their rights but they must stand their ground, says Labour leader Mahendra Chaudhry.

This is no ordinary election, he says, as it is crucial to the restoration of pride and dignity of a community whose struggle had culminated in the formation of a democratically elected Government that was illegally removed from power.

The restoration of his party, the Fiji Labour Party, would mean a restoration of lost pride, dignity and self-respect (izat). Mr Chaudhry was speaking to some 700 people, largely Indians, in a rally in Nadera, last night.

"We, as a nation and particularly, the Indo-Fijians have been wronged. You equally share the injustice and mistreatment with the members of my Government, so this election - we have a chance to get justice," Mr Chaudhry said

"The Indian community is seen as an insignificant community. "We are intimidated and it is sad that an Indian party (NFP) is also part of that intimidation - we are seen as a weak community.

"So let's dispel the fear and stand your ground."

Mr Chaudhry says that the Indians haven't stolen anything but have contributed towards the national development. "So I question, why don't we, Indians have any right?

Why are we treated like this - why can't we have an Indian Prime Minister? He is a citizen of this country and why is an Indian deprived?

"Many see me as an arrogant leader- the reason being that I have stood by my principles. I will not give in for any wrong but stand by my right."

He stressed that the polling that begins on Saturday provides an opportunity to win back the lost status in the eyes of the international community.

Mr Chaudhry's last advice to the voters is: "Do not be afraid, there is threat and intimidation but stand your ground because we must fight for justice and it will prevail over falsehood and injustice.

"The coup of May 19 was justified on the ground of protecting indigenous rights but we all know that it had nothing to do with the indigenous rights or Fijian unity. We all know that there were entrenched groups behind it - people didn't want to see a government made of poor, workers, farmers and small businessmen to govern this country.

"And this is when they paid huge sums of money to buy support to create civil unrest. So this election is about the fight between the rich and the poor. We have to redeem our integrity as a party.

"If we don't restore democracy, the illegal Qarase-regime will continue to rule this nation and we all know that he and his team spell nothing but disaster for Fiji.

"We restore justice to your children and that can be done.

END

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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