May 19, 1999 – May 27, 2000
|Preceded by||Sitiveni Rabuka|
|Succeeded by||Ratu Tevita Momoedonu|
|Born||9 February 1942 |
|Political party||Fiji Labour Party|
|Spouse||Virmati Chaudhry (married 1965)|
Mahendra Pal Chaudhry (born 9 February 1942) is the leader of the Fiji Labour Party. As a former British colony, Fiji has largely adopted British political models and follows the Westminster, or Cabinet system of government in which the Events 1535 - French explorer Jacques Cartier sets sail on his second voyage to North America with three ships 110 men and Year 1999 ( MCMXCIX) was a Common year starting on Friday (link will display full 1999 Gregorian calendar) Events 927 - Simeon the Great, Tsar of Bulgaria, dies 1120 - Richard III of Capua is anointed 2000 ( MM) was a Leap year that started on Saturday of the Common Era, in accordance with the Gregorian calendar. Major-General Sitiveni Ligamamada Rabuka, OBE, MSD, OStJ, (born September 13, 1948 is best known as the instigator of two military Ratu Tatu Tevita Momoedonu is a Fijian chief and has served as Prime Minister of Fiji twice - each time extremely briefly Events 474 - Zeno crowned as co-emperor of the Byzantine Empire. Year 1942 ( MCMXLII) was a Common year starting on Thursday (the link will display the full 1942 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Ba is a town in Fiji, 37 kilometers from Lautoka and 62 kilometers from Nadi, inland from the coast of Viti Levu, Fiji's largest island The Fiji Labour Party (FLP is a political party in Fiji, which holds observer status with the Socialist International. A Hindu ( Devanagari: हिन्दू is an adherent of the philosophies and scriptures of Hinduism, a set of religious, Philosophical Events 474 - Zeno crowned as co-emperor of the Byzantine Empire. Following a historic election in which he defeated the long-time former leader, Sitiveni Rabuka, the former trade union leader became Fiji's first Indo-Fijian Prime Minister on May 19, 1999, but exactly one year later, on May 19, 2000 he and most of his Cabinet were taken hostage by the hardline Fijian nationalist leader George Speight, in the Fiji coup of 2000. The general election to the Fijian House of Representatives, held from 8 to 15 May 1999, was historic Fiji (Matanitu ko Viti फ़िजी officially the Republic of the Fiji Islands (Matanitu Tu-Vaka-i-koya ko Viti फ़िजी द्वीप समूह गणराज्य Indo-Fijians are Fijians who trace their ancestry to India. They number 311591 (37 Events 1535 - French explorer Jacques Cartier sets sail on his second voyage to North America with three ships 110 men and Events 1535 - French explorer Jacques Cartier sets sail on his second voyage to North America with three ships 110 men and Fiji has the Westminster system - executive authority is vested nominally in a President, but exercised in practice by a Cabinet of Ministers presided George Speight, occasionally known as Ilikimi Naitini (born 16 May 1957) was the principal instigator of the Fiji coup of 2000, in which he The Fiji coup of 2000 was a complicated affair involving a civilian Putsch by hardline Fijian nationalists against the elected government of Prime Unable to exercise his duties, he and his ministers were sacked by President Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara on May 27; Mara intended to assume emergency powers himself but was himself deposed by the military leader, Commodore Frank Bainimarama. Fiji 's Head of State is the President of the Republic of the Fiji Islands. Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara Kabakoro] GCMG KBE CF, ( May 6, 1920 &ndash April 18, 2004 Events 927 - Simeon the Great, Tsar of Bulgaria, dies 1120 - Richard III of Capua is anointed Commodore Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama, MSD, OStJ, Fijian Navy, known commonly as Frank Bainimarama and sometimes by the chiefly title After 56 days in captivity, Chaudhry was released on 13 July and subsequently embarked on a tour of the world to rally support. Events 1174 - William I of Scotland, a key rebel in the Revolt of 1173-1174, is captured at Alnwick by forces loyal to He was one of the leading voices raised in opposition to the Qarase government's proposed Reconciliation and Unity Commission, which he said was just a mechanism to grant amnesty to persons guilty of coup-related offences. Laisenia Qarase (born February 4, 1941) served as the Prime Minister of Fiji from 2000 to 2006 The Reconciliation and Unity Commission is a proposed government body to be set up if the Reconciliation Tolerance and Unity Bill which was introduced into the Fijian In January 2007 he was appointed Minister of Finance, Sugar Reform Public Enterprise and National Planning in the interim Cabinet of Commodore Frank Bainimarama. Commodore is a Military rank used in many navies for officers whose position exceeds that of a navy captain, but is less than 
Mahendra Chaudhry was born in Ba but educated at Tavua Indian School and Shri Vivekanand High School. Ba is a district situation on the North Western part of the island of Viti Levu in Fiji. Tavua is a town in Fiji, 91 kilometers from Nadi and 9 kilometers from the Gold Mining settlement of Vatukoula. He subsequently worked as a research laboratory officer for the Emperor Gold Mine, before becoming an auditor in the Auditor General's office. The most general definition of an audit is an evaluation of a person organization system process project or product In 1963, he became Secretary General of the Fiji Public Service Association, and led Fiji's first-ever civil service strike that year.
Mahendra Chaudhry's ancestral ties are with the village of Bahu Jamalpur in Rohtak District, in the Indian state of Haryana. Rohtak (रोहतक is a Municipal council located in Rohtak District in the Haryana state of India on N India, officially the Republic of India (भारत गणराज्य inc-Latn Bhārat Gaṇarājya; see also other Indian languages) is a country India is a union of states comprising twenty-eight states and seven union territories. Haryana (हरियाणा Punjabi: ਹਰਿਆਣਾ hərɪjaːɳaː is a state in northern India. His grandfather, Ram Nath Chaudhry, arrived in Fiji in 1902, as an indentured labourer, to work on Fiji's sugarcane plantations. An Indenture is a legal Contract between two parties particularly for indentured labour or a term of Apprenticeship but also for certain land Sugarcane ( Saccharum) is a genus of 6 to 37 species (depending on taxonomic interpretation of tall perennial grasses (family Poaceae tribe Andropogoneae On his arrival in Fiji he disputed the agreement to work in the plantations and was employed as a store manager until he started his own business. He later returned to India with his wife, Jai Kali (died September 22, 1930 at age 45) whom he had met and married in Fiji, daughter, Raaj Kumari and second son, Ram Gopal. Events 66 - Emperor Nero creates the Legion I Italica. 1236 - The Lithuanians Year 1930 ( MCMXXX) was a Common year starting on Wednesday (link will display 1930 calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Their elder son, Krishn Gopal Chaudhry remained in Fiji. Ram Gopal Chaudhry returned to Fiji in 1934 or there abouts. Ram Gopal had seven children (five sons and two daughters), one of them and the eldest son, Mahendra.
Chaudhry has been married to Virmati since 1965; they have three children and several grandchildren. Unlike the Hindu Chaudhry, Virmati is a born-again Pentecostal Christian (source). Pentecostalism is a renewalist religious movement within Christianity that places special emphasis on the direct personal experience of God through the Baptism While her husband and son, Rajendra were still in captivity, she announced on 18 June 2000 that she had decided to forgive George Speight. Rajendra Chaudhry is an Indo-Fijian lawyer and former civil servant Events 618 - Coronation of the Chinese governor Li Yuan as Emperor Gaozu of Tang, the new Emperor of China, initiating three centuries
In 2004, Chaudhry received the Pravasi Bharatiya Community Service Award, which is granted to members of the Indian diaspora to honour their contributions to the countries of which they are members. The Pravasi Bharatiya Community Service Award is an honour granted annually by the Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO to honour persons of Indian ancestry A non-resident Indian (NRI is an Indian citizen who has migrated to another country a person of Indian origin who is born outside India or a person of Chaudhry was the first Fijian citizen to receive this award.
On 20 November 2005, Chaudhry's youngest son Sachindra married Marian Ma'afu, a descendant of the Tongan-Fijian prince Enele Ma'afu who conquered the Lau Islands and Taveuni in the nineteenth century. Events 284 - Diocletian was chosen as Roman Emperor. 762 - Bögü Khan of the Uyghurs, Year 2005 ( MMV) was a Common year starting on Saturday (link displays full calendar of the Gregorian calendar. Enele Ma'afu'atuitoga, commonly known as Ma'afu was a man of two kingdoms being traditionally a Tongan Prince and a self forged Fijian chief The Lau Islands (also called the Lau Group, the Eastern Group, the Eastern Archipelago) of Fiji are situated in the southern Pacific Taveuni (taβeuni is the third-largest island in Fiji after Vanua Levu and Viti Levu, with a total land area of 435 square kilometers The interracial marriage, a rarity in Fiji, was not intended as a political statement, a family source said.
Mahendra Chaudhry helped to launch the Fiji Labour Party in 1985. The Labour got its first chance to test its popularity in the by-election for the North Central Indian National Seat in December 1985, following the resignation of Vijay R. Singh. Sir Vijay Raghubar Singh, KBE ( 13 July, 1931 - 25 September, 2006) was an Indo-Fijian lawyer and politician FLP decided to field Mahendra Chaudhry, who was also the general secretary of the National Farmers Union, as its candidate. The National Farmers Union (NFU is one of Fiji 's largest Trade unions It was launched in Labasa in July 1978 under the auspices of the Fiji Trades Chaudhry lost the election by only 204 votes.
He was elected to Parliament for the first time in the general election of 1987 and appointed Minister for Finance and Economic Planning in the coalition government of Timoci Bavadra. The general election of April 1987 was Fiji's fifth since the country had gained its independence from the United Kingdom seventeen years earlier A coalition government, or coalition cabinet, is a Cabinet of a parliamentary Government in which several parties cooperate This government held office for barely a month; on 14 May, Lieutenant Colonel Sitiveni Rabuka deposed the government in the first of two military coups. Events 1264 - Battle of Lewes: Henry III of England is captured in France making Simon de Montfort the Lieutenant Colonel ( Lieutenant-Colonel in English from the French grade 's spelling is a rank of Commissioned officer in the armies The Fiji coups of 1987 resulted in the overthrow of the elected government of Fijian Prime Minister Timoci Bavadra, the deposition of Elizabeth II
Mahendra Chaudhry remained active in the Labour Party, and assumed leadership of the party in 1991 from Adi Kuini Bavadra, widow of Timoci Bavadra who had died in 1989. Adi Kuini Teimumu Vuikaba Speed ( 23 December 1949 - 31 December 2004) was a Fijian chief and politician who In 1990 a new constitution had been imposed on Fiji by presidential decree. A decree is an order made by a Head of state or government and having the force of Law. This constitution discriminated against the Indian community in seats allocated to it in the House of Representatives, by not guaranteeing any seats in the Senate and by restricting Fiji Indians from holding prominent positions in the civil service. Indo-Fijians are Fijians who trace their ancestry to India. They number 311591 (37 Both the NFP and FLP decided to boycott the elections scheduled for May 1992. At the last minute, the NFP decided to contest the election. Mahendra Chaudhry, then had no choice but to lead the FLP into the election. WIth little time to prepare for the campaign, the FLP managed to win only 13 of the 27 seats reserved for Indians.
After the election, Chaudhry made the controversial decision to support Sitiveni Rabuka in Parliament, in exchange for a promise to review the 1990 Constitution, which Fiji Indians generally regarded as discriminating against them. Rabuka did not follow through on the deal, and Chaudhry and the Labour Party were punished at the parliamentary election of 1994, losing 6 of their 13 seats. Fiji held a general election in 1994, three years earlier than scheduled
In the mid-1990s, after Rabuka finally did agree to a constitutional review, Chaudhry led campaign to change the electoral system from one based on "communal rolls" (with parliamentary seats reserved by ethnicity, elected by voters enrolled as members of particular ethnic groups), to one based on universal suffrage. The Constitution of Fiji is the supreme law of Fiji. Background The Constitution of the Republic of the Fiji Islands dates from 1997 Fiji has held nine general elections for the House of Representatives since becoming independent of the United Kingdom in 1970; there had Communal constituencies have been the most durable feature of the Fijian electoral system. Universal suffrage (also universal adult suffrage, general suffrage or common suffrage) consists of the extension of the right to vote to Eventually, a compromise formula was agreed upon. Meanwhile, the Rabuka government was losing popularity. His admissions of womanizing, together with allegations of corruption in his administration, alienated him from powerful sections of the electorate. Chaudhry, meanwhile, forged the People's Coalition, an electoral alliance consisting of his Labour Party, and two other parties, both led by indigenous Fijians disaffected by Rabuka's administration. The People's Coalition was an alliance of three political parties in Fiji, formed in March 1999 to contest the parliamentary election to Another indigenous-led party, the Christian Democratic Alliance, joined the coalition later. The Christian Democratic Alliance better known locally by its Fijian name Veitokani ni Lewenivanua Vakarisito (VLV was a Fijian political party
The 1999 election resulted in a landslide win for the People's Coalition, with 58 of the 71 seats in the House of Representatives. The general election to the Fijian House of Representatives, held from 8 to 15 May 1999, was historic The Fiji coup of 2000 was a complicated affair involving a civilian Putsch by hardline Fijian nationalists against the elected government of Prime The Labour Party won an absolute majority, 37 seats, in its own right. From the outset, voices both within the coalition and without attempted to persuade Chaudhry to forego the office of Prime Minister in favour of an ethnic Fijian, such as his deputy Tupeni Baba or Adi Kuini Speed (by now, the leader of the Fijian Association Party, part of the People's Coalition), but he refused. Tupeni Lebaivalu Baba is a Fijian academic and politician who founded the now-defunct New Labour Unity Party. The Fijian Association Party (FAP is a former political party in Fiji. President Mara reportedly persuaded indigenous Fijian members of the coalition to accept Chaudhry's leadership. Chaudhry was duly appointed Prime Minister on 19 May 1999. Events 1535 - French explorer Jacques Cartier sets sail on his second voyage to North America with three ships 110 men and To shore up his support among the indigenous community, Chaudhry appointed indigenous Fijians to two-thirds of all ministerial positions.
Few in Chaudhry's caucus had had any previous political experience, a factor that created difficulties for his government. Extreme Fijian nationalists opposed his administration and stirred up fears in the mostly rural ethnic Fijian population that land reform measures proposed by the Chaudhry government would expropriate their land (notwithstanding constitutional guarantees of indigenous control over five sixths of the land, which cannot be changed without the support of 9 of the 14 chiefly representatives in the Senate). Land reforms (also Agrarian reform, though that can have a broader meaning is an often- controversial alteration in the societal arrangements whereby government The Great Council of Chiefs (Bose Levu Vakaturaga in Fijian) is a now dormant 1997 constitutional body in the Republic of the Fiji Islands. The Senate of Fiji is the upper chamber of Parliament. It is the less powerful of the two chambers it may not initiate legislation but may amend or veto it Despite widespread fears of civil unrest, the takeover of the parliamentary complex by George Speight on 19 May 2000 (one year to the day since Chaudhry's appointment as Prime Minister) happened without warning. Events 1535 - French explorer Jacques Cartier sets sail on his second voyage to North America with three ships 110 men and
See Fiji coup of 2000 and the linked Timeline, Mutinies, and Aftermath for information on the overthrow of the Chaudhry government. Timeline ( 2000 - 2001) May 19, 20, 26, 27, 29, 30. Two military mutinies took place in connection with the civilian coup d'état that rocked Fiji in 2000, the first while the rebellion instigated The Constitution of Fiji, which had been abrogated by the Interim Military Government of Commodore Frank Bainimarama (who organized a counter-coup to neutralize
When democracy was restored in 2001, Chaudhry fought a hotly contested election, but was defeated by Laisenia Qarase of the Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua (SDL). The Constitution of Fiji was restored by a High Court decision on 15 November 2000, following the failure of the political upheaval The Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua (occasionally known as the United Fiji Party but usually known by the acronym SDL) is a political party in Fiji It is thought that attrition within the Labour Party was a factor in his defeat; high-profile party members like Tupeni Baba had split to form the New Labour Unity Party and he had barely survived a leadership challenge. The New Labour Unity Party was a Fijian political party, which broke away from the Fiji Labour Party in May 2001. Mutual enmity between his party and the National Federation Party, the only other political party with significant Fiji-Indian support at that time, prevented a preference-swapping deal. The National Federation Party is a Fijian political party founded by A In Fiji's system of transferable voting, such a deal would almost certainly have made him Prime Minister again. Instant-runoff voting ( IRV) is a Voting system used for single-winner elections in which voters have one vote and rank Candidates in order of (Fiji's electoral laws, modelled on those of Australia, allow the votes of any two or more candidates in a particular constituency to be combined according to the candidates' preferences; voters may specify a different choice by ranking the candidates numerically in the order of their preference). For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics.
Chaudhry has since rebuilt the Labour Party, which won several key byelections throughout 2004. He challenged in the courts the refusal of the Qarase government to include his party in the Cabinet; on 18 July 2003, the Supreme Court ruled in his favour, saying that the exclusion of a party with more than 8 seats in the House of Representatives violated the Constitution. Events 390 BC - Roman - Gaulish Wars Battle of the Allia - a Roman army is defeated by raiding Gauls, Year 2003 ( MMIII) was a Common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. The Supreme Court of Fiji is one of three courts established by Chapter 9 of the Constitution, the others being the High Court and the The House of Representatives is the lower chamber of Fiji's Parliament. Appeals, counter-appeals, and negotiations delayed the appointment of Labour Ministers to the Cabinet, however. The Supreme Court subsequently ruled in June 2004 that the Labour Party was entitled to 14 out of 30 cabinet posts. Qarase announced that he would implement the order, but his refusal to include Chaudhry himself in any cabinet lineup continued to stall negotiations on the composition of the cabinet. Late in 2004, Chaudhry announced that the Labour Party had decided to remain in opposition for the remainder of the parliamentary term, seeing no way to resolve the impasse without making unacceptable compromises. By remaining outside of the government, the Labour Party was able to distance itself from unpopular decisions made by the administration, and position to challenge the ruling SDL for power in 2006.
The Fiji Labour Party formed an electoral alliance with the Party of National Unity (PANU) and United Peoples Party (UPP) of Mick Beddoes to contest the 2006 general elections. The Constitution of Fiji requires general elections for the House of Representatives to be held at least once every five years The United Peoples Party is a political party in Fiji, whose support base lies chiefly among General Electors - Fiji Islanders who belong to ethnic The SDL Party of Prime Minister Qarase had formed a grand coalition of ethnic Fijian parties to unite the Fijians. During the election, the issue of race was again raised and this galvanised Fijian support behind Qarase. Although the FLP increased its share of votes to 39% and won four more seats to make a total of 31, it was unable to unseat the Qarase Government.
Chaudhry was criticised by some prominent members of the FLP, which included Krishna Dutt and Poseci Bune, for finalising his list of Senate nominees without consulting the Party. The Party has threatened action against those members who spoke out publicly against Chuadhry.
Chaudhry decision to join the multi-party cabinet (although Chaudhry himself did not join the cabinet), has also been a course for friction within the party. Prime Minister Qarase demanded that all cabinet members vote for the budget or face dismissal, but Chaudhry advised the Labour cabinet members to oppose it because of the increase in VAT tax. In the end four members voted against the budget while others were absent from Parliament.
Chaudhry is known for his combative style of leadership, which has won him both admirers and enemies.
He remains at loggerheads with the National Federation Party, whose support dropped sharply in 1999, 2001 and 2006 elections, but appears to do well in local government elections. Although it would be to his advantage to reach a deal on an exchange of preferences with the NFP, competition for support from Indian voters, particularly in the sugar cane growing areas, where FLP and NFP endorse rival unions, has made this very unlikely.
He has failed to make significant inroads into the ethnic Fijian electorate, less than ten percent of whom voted for his party in recent elections. Fijian people are the major indigenous people of the Fiji Islands, and live in an area informally called Melanesia. He has been successful, however, in attracting several high-profile ethnic Fijians, such as Poseci Bune, to his party. Poseci Waqalevu Bune is a Fijian politician who has served as Deputy Leader of the Fiji Labour Party (FLP
Chaudhry has expressed alarm at the high rate of emigration from Fiji, especially of Fiji-Indians, and also of educated indigenous Fijians. "If the trend continues, Fiji will be left with a large pool of poorly educated, unskilled work force with disastrous consequences on our social and economic infrastructure and levels of investment," he said in a statement on 19 June 2005. Events 1179 - The Norwegian Battle of Kalvskinnet outside Nidaros. He blamed the coups of 1987 for "brain drain" which has, he said, adversely affected the sugar industry, the standard of the education and health services, and the efficiency of the civil service. This was creating a vacuum that would lead to increased levels of crime, drug abuse, and money laundering, he considered. He lamented the "indications of a growing feeling of insecurity, frustration and disaffection among people of all races at the direction in which Fiji appears to be headed," and said that only way to reverse the trend was to elect a government that would provide stability, raise living standards, and create a climate of confidence for investors and opportunities for job seekers.
Since May and June 2005, Chaudhry has been at the forefront of a campaign against the government's controversial Reconciliation, Tolerance, and Unity Bill, which proposes to establish a Commission with the power, subject to presidential approval, to compensate victims and pardon perpetrators of the 2000 coup. Speaking on 20 May, he said that a "culture of coups" had developed in Fiji and that it needed to be eradicated. Events 325 - The First Council of Nicaea &ndash the first Ecumenical Council of the Christian Church is held Pardoning persons involved in the earlier coups of 1987 had been a serious mistake, he believed.
Chaudhry has also spoken in favour of bringing more ethnic Fijians into the economic mainstream. He attacked what he called the "divide and rule" policies of Fiji's former British colonial rulers, saying that indigenous Fijians had been isolated from other communities and marginalized economically. The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom, the UK or Britain,is a Sovereign state located The British Empire was the largest empire in history and for over a century was the foremost global power. This colonial legacy had remained the status quo in society, even since independence in 1970, he maintained. "The status quo is not good for the ordinary Fijians. It is good for the elites in society but not for the ordinary Fijians," Chaudhry said. Positive discrimination programs would not achieve much without a dismantling of the traditional communal mindset, he said. He called for a more individualistic approach to society, based on incentives and appropriate training. He did not believe that modernization would threaten the communal structure of Fijian society. "No you can still fulfil your traditional obligations but the contradiction in the system between the communal approach and the free market approach needs to be addressed," he said. He also insisted that culture could not be allowed to be stagnant.
He condemned Prime Minister Qarase for speaking against the Universal Declaration on Human Rights. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights ( UDHR) is a declaration adopted by the United Nations General Assembly ( 10 December 1948 at Palais Qarase had told a meeting of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association in Nadi the day before that western-style democracy was an alien concept in Fiji, and that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was not compatible with Fiji's hierarchical order. The Commonwealth Parliamentary Association, previously known as the Empire Parliamentary Association, is an organsation of British origin which works to support Chaudhry countered by saying that Qarase was like a proverbial ostrich with its head in the sand. The Ostrich ( Struthio camelus) is a large Flightless bird native to Africa (and formerly the Middle East) "The rule of law must apply equally to everyone, irrespective of status in society or class divisions it is this equal application that is the bulwark of modern democracies," he said.
Chaudhry has periodically called for Fiji's electoral system to be reformed. Historical overview Fiji 's electoral system is the result of complex negotiations compromises and experiments conducted over the years leading up to and following independence He said on 20 November 2005 that communal voting, which reserves almost two-thirds of the seats in the House of Representatives for persons registered on ethnic electoral rolls, tended to polarize the nation and gave foundation to politicians with what he called extreme views. Events 284 - Diocletian was chosen as Roman Emperor. 762 - Bögü Khan of the Uyghurs, Communal constituencies have been the most durable feature of the Fijian electoral system. He said that any move to change this provision in the Constitution would be supported by the Opposition.
Chaudhry said on 18 October 2005 that he and the FLP would not support Prime Minister Qarase's attempts to close constitutional loopholes that undermine Fiji's anti-gay laws. Events 1009 - The Church of the Holy Sepulchre, a Christian church in Jerusalem, is completely destroyed by the Fatimid Chaudhry said that gays rights were guaranteed by the constitution and must be upheld; the Prime Minister, who needs a two-thirds majority in Parliament to change the constitution, was just wasting his time trying to gain FLP support for the measure, he said.
Chaudhry also protested strongly against Qarase's claims, made at the annual conference of Fiji Employers Federation on 2 September, that the Labour Party was unsympathetic to business and held "a classic left-wing suspicion of . Events 44 BC - Pharaoh Cleopatra VII of Egypt declares her son co-ruler as Ptolemy XV Caesarion. . . the profit motive. " Chaudhry countered that his party was, in fact, pro-business had enacted a number of policies aimed at stimulating economic growth when it was in power. "It was the FLP that was committed to reducing the cost of doing business and started by lowering the cost of utilities, and requested the commercial banks and lending organizations to reduce their fees, charges and interest rates . . . that saw the economy record an unprecedented growth of 9. 6% in 1999," Chaudhry declared. He said that in the five years of Qarase's leadership, public debt had doubled to F$2.3 billion, that basic infrastructure had deteriorated, and that the economy was on the brink of collapse. The dollar ( Currency sign: $; currency code: FJD) has been the Currency of Fiji since 1969 and
Chaudhry has been involved in a number of controversial circumstances over the years, ranging from a manslaughter conviction in 1978 to allegations of misuse of funds as recently as 2005.
In 1978, Chaudhry was convicted of manslaughter for his involvement in a fatal automobile accident. Manslaughter is a legal term for the killing of a human being in a manner considered by law as less culpable than Murder. He was sentenced to nine months's imprisonment for failing to stop after the accident. After serving only three days of the sentence, however, he was released on a Compulsory Supervision Order (i. e. , parole). Parole may have different meanings depending on the field and judiciary system
Prime Minister Qarase drew media attention to Chaudhry's manslaughter conviction and his almost immediate release, in response to Chaudhry's criticism of government decisions to show leniency towards persons convicted of involvement in the 2000 coup, including former Vice-President Ratu Jope Seniloli and Cabinet Minister Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu. The Fijian vice-presidency is a mostly ceremonial office The position was created in 1990, to provide a constitutional successor to the President, Ratu Jope Naucabalavu Seniloli (born 1939) is a Fijian chief who holds the title of Turaga Taukei Naua and who Ratu Naiqama Tawake Lalabalavu is a Fijian Paramount Chief and politician Qarase accused Chaudhry and his supporters of "living in glasshouses. " Chaudhry pointed out that there was no comparison between a premeditated act of treason and a mere traffic offence for which he had not been sent to jail (the prison sentence was not for causing death, but for failing to stop).
The Fiji Times reported on 4 September 2005 that Chaudhry and his principal opponent, Prime Minister Qarase, had traded mutual accusations of using hate speech to win political support. Events 476 - Romulus Augustus, last emperor of the Western Roman Empire, is deposed when Odoacer proclaims himself Hate speech is a term for speech intended to degrade intimidate or incite violence or prejudicial action against a person or group of people based on their race, Gender
On 8 December 2005, Chaudhry announced his decision to sue Prime Minister Qarase and Fiji Television for defamation. Events 1609 - Biblioteca Ambrosiana opens its reading room the second public library of Europe. In law a lawsuit is a civil action brought before a Court in which the party commencing the action the Plaintiff, seeks a legal or equitable remedy Fiji Television Limited is Fiji 's television network It was founded on 15 June 1994 as the first permanent television broadcasting network in the country
Addressing the House of Representatives on 23 November 2005, Prime Minister Qarase alleged that Chaudhry had had money raised for him in the Indian state of Haryana, and called on Chaudhry to reveal what had happened to the money since. Events 800 - Charlemagne arrives at Rome to investigate the alleged crimes of On 2 December, he told Parliament that he was aware that money had been raised in his name in Haryana, but denied having authorized the appeal or receiving any of its proceeds. Events 1409 - The University of Leipzig opens 1755 - The second Eddystone Lighthouse is destroyed by fire He had raised the issue with Om Prakash Chautala, he said, after being hounded by the media in both Fiji and India. He claimed to have discovered only during his 2005 visit to India that Chautala's record with money is not transparent. "My anger about the whole episode is that Shri Chautala should exploit the feelings of the ordinary and poor folks of Haryana who are emotionally tied to me and to the people of Indian origin in Fiji and play on them a game of deceit for self enrichment," Chaudhry said.
On 30 November, the Haryana state government ordered an investigation into the allegations. Events 1700 - Battle of Narva — A Swedish army of 8500 men under Charles XII defeats This followed reports in the Indian media that an Indian political party, the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD), had raised over a million crore (F$376,557) for Chaudhry in 2001, who was then visiting India to raise support following his overthrow in the 2000 coup. Indian National Lok Dal, a Political party in India, based in the state of Haryana is the principal opposition party in Haryana A crore is a unit in the Indian numbering system and was formerly a unit in the Persian numbering system still widely used in Bangladesh, India, Maldives According to Webindia, however, the money had not been delivered to him, because of currency regulations, and was instead deposited in the Oriental Bank of Commerce account of the Indo-Fiji Friendship Society. Oriental Bank of Commerce, established on 19th February 1943 in Lahore (then a city of British India, and currently in Pakistan) is one of the Public INLD Secretary General Ajay Singh Chautala, whose father Om Prakash Chautala was Chief Minister of Haryana at the time, welcomed the probe. Shri Ajay Singh Chautala (born 13 March 1961) is a politician from Indian National Lok Dal party and a Member Rajya Sabha representing Haryana Om Prakash Chautala (ओम प्रकाश चौटाला (born January 1, 1935) is an Indian politician from the state of Haryana. The Haryana authorities were not mollified by his comments, and on 20 December Ranbir Singh Surjewala , the Haryana State Transport and Parliamentary Affairs Minister, called for the passports of Chautala and his two sons to be seized to prevent them from leaving the country. Events 69 - Vespasian, formerly a general under Nero, enters Rome to claim the title of Emperor.
It was announced on 7 December 2005 that India's Bureau of Investigation had cleared Chaudhry of the allegations. Events 43 BC - Marcus Tullius Cicero assassinated 1696 - Connecticut Route 108, one of the oldest highways
In another twist, Qarase had also declared on 25 November that he had unspecified "evidence", which he claimed to have received from India, that a senior member of the FLP had attempted to get commissions from Indian companies that had applied for contracts with respect to the reform of Fiji's sugar industry. Events 1034 - Máel Coluim mac Cináeda, King of Scots dies Donnchad, the He warned Chaudhry that he did not make unfounded allegations, and that he would use the evidence "when the time comes. " He later repeated the allegations outside of Parliament. Reacting angrily to the charges, Chaudhry threatened on 4 December to sue Qarase if he failed to apologize for or substantiate his claims. "December 4th" redirects here For the song by Jay-Z, see December 4th (song. "It is the Prime Minister's duty to provide the evidence. These are serious allegations that have cast a slur on my integrity and reputation," he said. The following day, his son and lawyer, Rajendra Chaudhry, wrote to the Prime Minister giving him three days to apologize or else face a lawsuit. Events 63 BC - Cicero reads the last of his Catiline Orations. On 7 December, Qarase refused the ultimatum. Events 43 BC - Marcus Tullius Cicero assassinated 1696 - Connecticut Route 108, one of the oldest highways "I don't apologize for nothing," the Fiji Times reported him as saying. The Fiji Times is a daily Newspaper published in Fiji. Established in Levuka on 4 September 1869, it is Fiji's oldest
When the three-day deadline set by Chaudhry expired, he announced on 8 December that he would be suing Qarase as an individual, not as Prime Minister, meaning that Qarase would be unable to use state funds to fight his case. Events 1609 - Biblioteca Ambrosiana opens its reading room the second public library of Europe. The writ, which named Qarase the first defendant, also named Fiji Television as the second defendant. In Law, a writ is a formal written order issued by a body with administrative or judicial Jurisdiction. "Qarase had been reluctant to furnish evidence to substantiate his claims . . . The imputations are very serious and a direct question on my integrity and leadership. As such I have had the resort to legal action," Chaudhry declared.
At the scheduled press conference on 9 December, the Prime Minister revealed a confidential letter from Mahendra Chaudhry, written on National Farmers Union (NFU) letterhead in his capacity as General Secretary of the Union, to Charles Walker, chairman of the Fiji Sugar Corporation (FSC), in September 2003. Events 536 - Byzantine General Belisarius enters Rome while the Ostrogothic garrison peacefully leaves the city Fiji Sugar Corporation (FSC is the Government-owned sugar milling company in Fiji having the monopoly on production of all raw sugar in Fiji The letter proposed that the NFU purchase shares in the FSC, and stated that he, Senator Anand Singh, and United Consultancy of Auckland, New Zealand, were in talks with "an India-based milling company" to restructure the FSC. The Auckland metropolitan area or Greater Auckland, in the North Island of New Zealand, is the largest and most populous urban area in the country New Zealand is an Island country in the south-western Pacific Ocean comprising two main landmasses (the North Island and the South Island According to the Prime Minister, the deal would have transferred shares, that the government was considering selling, not to cane farmers but to their trade union representatives. "The benefit was only to the NFU," Qarase said. Qarase called for an audit of the office of the Leader of the Opposition, saying that it would prove his connections to the Indian company. The most general definition of an audit is an evaluation of a person organization system process project or product Equipment in Chaudhry's office had been used to communicate with the company since 2002, he alleged.
Chaudhry derided the revelations as "laughable," and said that they showed no connection whatsoever between himself and India's Exim Bank, or with the Indian government loan. "It was clear that having made wild baseless allegations, the PM was clutching at straws to try and validate his claims," Chaudhry said. "There is absolutely no connection between the loan and a letter that I wrote to PM’s steering committee Charles Walker as chairman on sugar industry reforms that Qarase released to the media as his ‘proof’ that I had received a commission from the loan," he added. Nor did it substantiate, he said, Qarase's claims that he had sought a commission from the Indian companies.
Also on 9 December, FLP Senator and former Attorney-General Anand Singh announced his decision to sue the Indian government and the Head of the Indian Technical Mission, J. Events 536 - Byzantine General Belisarius enters Rome while the Ostrogothic garrison peacefully leaves the city Fiji 's chief governmental legal officer is the Attorney General. Anand Kumar Singh is a Fijian lawyer and politician of Indian descent J. Bhagat, for compensation for providing the ideas, which he says were adopted without acknowledgement by the Fijian and Indian governments. Prime Minister Qarase had earlier alleged on 5 December that Chaudhry had been a party to the negotiations, and called on the FLP to reveal whether it was involved with Singh's compensation claim. Events 63 BC - Cicero reads the last of his Catiline Orations.
On 14 December, High Court Justice Anthony Gates dismissed a call from Chaudhry to impose a gag order on Prime Minister Qarase, from making media statements until Chaudhry's lawsuit is heard. Events 1287 - St Lucia's flood: The Zuider Zee sea wall in the Netherlands collapses killing over 50000 people The High Court of Fiji is one of three courts established by Chapter 9 of the Constitution, the others being the Court of Appeal and the Anthony Harold Cumberland Thomas Gates is Acting Chief Justice of Fiji. Whether the Prime Minister's statements were defamatory was an issue that would have to be resolved in the trial itself, Gates ruled; in the meantime, the court would not interfere with constitutional guarantees of freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is the freedom to speak freely without Censorship or Limitation. Chaudhry was ordered to pay F$750 to Qarase and Fiji Television Limited to cover court costs. 9 January 2006 has been set for the hearing of the defamation suit. Events 475 - Byzantine Emperor Zeno is forced to flee his capital at Constantinople. Chaudhry had failed, Gates said, to provide "credible evidence" that Qarase's words were untruthful, and therefore there was no grounds to prohibit their publication.
On 9 January 2006, Gates announced that he was withdrawing from the case against the Prime Minister and against Fiji Television. Events 475 - Byzantine Emperor Zeno is forced to flee his capital at Constantinople. He was fully booked judging criminal cases, and had no time to devote to civil suits, he said.
Chaudhry released correspondence on 20 January 2006, citing it as proof that neither he nor his party had tried to collect a commission on Indian loans granted for sugar industry reform. Events 250 - Emperor Decius begins a widespread persecution of Christians in Rome. The letter, from the Indian High Commission to Fiji, said that the Exim Bank had confirmed that there was no attempt to secure a commission on the loan, and that the bank never pays commissions on loans. High Commissioner is the title of various high-ranking special executive positions held by a commission of appointment In reply, the Prime Minister said that a number of unanswered questions remained, which would be addressed when the case was heard in court.
Chaudhry announced on 27 February that as of 16 January, he had withdrawn his case against Fiji Television, but not against the Prime Minister. Events 1560 - The Treaty of Berwick, which would expel the French from Scotland, is signed by England and the Congregation Events 27 BC - The title Augustus is bestowed upon Gaius Julius Caesar Octavian by the Roman Senate.
On 5 December 2005, lawyer Rajendra Chaudhry filed a writ against the Daily Post, on behalf of his father, Fiji Labour Party (FLP) leader Mahendra Chaudhry. Events 63 BC - Cicero reads the last of his Catiline Orations. The Fiji's Daily Post is a Newspaper that was formed by Wame Waqanisanini JR in Oct 1987 who owned 50 percent of the shares The writ against the government-owned newspaper, whose editor Mesake Koroi is a cousin of Prime Minister Qarase's, concerns what Chaudhry claims are "untrue and malicious" allegations, suggesting a leadership struggle within the FLP. The article in question also claimed that the FLP was no longer the party founded by Timoci Bavadra, Tupeni Baba, and Adi Kuini Speed, but had turned into a hard-line Indian nationalist party.
It was revealed on 23 December 2005 that Auditor-General Eroni Vatuloka was investigating a complaint from Prime Minister Qarase, accusing Chaudhry of abuse of office. Events 962 - Byzantine-Arab Wars: Under the future Emperor Nicephorus Phocas, Byzantine troops stormed the city The Prime Minister alleges that Chaudhry has allowed Senator Anand Singh to use office equipment for commercial purposes. Chaudhry has dismissed the Prime Minister's complaint as "frivolous" and "childish. "
Fiji Television revealed on 31 January 2006 that the National Farmers Union had put the parliamentary telephone number on a letter faxed to a business client, and that the letter was signed by Shareen Prasad, an employee at the FLP parliamentary office. Events 1504 - France cedes Naples to Aragon. 1606 - Gunpowder Plot: Guy Fawkes Chaudhry again refused to comment on the claims, saying they were "trivial. "
Pramod Rae, General Secretary of the National Federation Party (NFP), the chief rival of the FLP for the Indo-Fijian vote, called for a thorough investigation into the allegations. Pramod Kumar Rae (born 27 October 1951 is a Fijian Trade unionist and political organizer of Indian descent
Chaudhry was registered as an advisor to the Inter-Religious Federation For World Peace International, an organization affiliated with the Unification Church. The Unification Church is a New religious movement founded by Korean religious leader Sun Myung Moon. The Fijian government abruptly revoked permission for Sun Myung Moon, the group's 85-year old founder, to visit Fiji, where he was to be the keynote speaker at a conference in Nadi. Sun Myung Moon (born January 6 1920) is the Korean founder and leader of the world-wide Unification Church and of the larger Unification Dr. Lesi Korovavala, Chief Executive Officer of the Immigration Department described Moon's doctrines as "misleading, repugnant and divisive," said that his visit would not be conducive to "peace, good order, public safety and public morality," and concluded that he was "not a fit and proper person to enter the country. Dr Lesi Korovavala is a Fijian Civil servant, who is currently the Chief Executive Officer of the Ministry for Home Affairs "
Chaudhry slammed the government decision, saying that it was treating Moon like a terrorist or a criminal. "Rev Dr. Moon is not a criminal or a terrorist to be treated in this manner," Chaudhry said. "He is a man dedicated to a mission of peace through the promotion of moral and spiritual values. He has founded an organisation that believes in the inculcation of moral and family values to bring about better global understanding and harmony. " Chaudhry was joined by Senate President Taito Waqavakatoga, registered as a coordinator of the group, who said that Moon would have made a positive contribution to Fiji. Taito Waqavakatoga is a Fijian political leader and former civil servant who served as President of the Senate from
Mr. Chaudhry was cleared of any taxation breaches after the Inquiry team brought from Australia studied the evidence and documents provided by the FIRCA, stating that Mr Chaudhry had not breached any taxation laws. For a topic outline on this subject see List of basic Australia topics. The tax assessment by FIRCA with respect to Mr Chaudhry between 2000 and 2006 was carried out in accordance with the Tax Act and other relevant tax laws in Fiji. The inquiry team was headed by Bruce Cowley a partner in the law firm Minter Ellison in Brisbane, Russel Postle a partner in the accounting firm of BDO Kendalls, also in Brisbane, and former deputy PM, Taufa Vakatale. Minter Ellison is one of the largest full-service Law firms in the Asia-Pacific region Brisbane ( is the state capital of Queensland. Brisbane is the third most populous city in Australia and the most populous city of Queensland A Deputy Prime Minister or Vice Prime Minister is in some countries a government minister who can take the position of acting Prime Minister when the
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|Prime Minister of Fiji|
1999 - 2000
Ratu Tevita Momoedonu