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  • Writer's pictureNational Federation Party - Fiji

FSC salary debacle Bainimarama lied to Parliament

The then Prime Minister responsible for sugar ministry Voreqe Bainimarama lied to Parliament on 14th February 2019 by saying an investigation had commenced and was ongoing regarding alleged financial abuse and mismanagement by the former Chief Executive Officer of the Fiji Sugar Corporation.

This was in response to a question by National Federation Leader Professor Biman Prasad.

Revelations about salaries of Fiji Sugar Corporation Executive Management especially its former Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Abdul Khan receiving $840,000 in salary and allowance per year for 4 years totaling over $3 million have shocked the nation but not the National Federation Party.

The NFP Leader Professor Biman Prasad had also called for a forensic audit of FSC’s finances to ascertain the conduct or otherwise of mismanagement and financial abuse in October 2016, when the then FSC CEO Abdul Khan decided to resign.

A few days later back then, the then Permanent Secretary to the PM’s Office also responsible for Sugar (Yogesh Karan) announced an investigation had commenced.

On 14th February, 2019, the NFP Leader asked a question on the progress of the investigations. The then PM and sugar minister, while lamenting the fact that the question was allowed by the parliamentary business committee, went on to say that aestivations had commenced and were ongoing.

Bainimarama said it wouldn’t be prudent to discuss the probe as it was on-going. Now we know he lied to parliament.

As Minister for Sugar, Bainimarama is responsible for the demise of the industry and payment of exorbitantly high salaries and allowances to FSC executives, notably Abdul Khan.

That is why as PM and sugar minister, he strongly opposed a forensic audit of FSC’s finances and salary payments.

To add salt to injury, his government fleeced cane growers around $15 million in three years by not fulfilling a promise to pay them a guaranteed price of $85 per tonne of cane.

Voreqe Bainimarama must now answer why he prevented scrutiny of Abdul Khan’s financial dealings and management as head of FSC.

He must also tell the people of Fiji, particularly cane growers, why under his leadership of the sugar industry, FSC executives were getting more than half a million dollars annually that was being funded by the taxpayers through government grants to a bankrupt entity.

Seni Nabou General Secretary


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