REPORT AND COMMENTARY: FIJI GOES TO THE POLLS

admin's picture

By Dr. Sanjay Ramesh June 14, 1999

From 8 to 15 May 1999, Fiji citizens cast their votes in a first general election, which was held under a fair and a democratic constitution. However, underneath the "cross-cultural consensus" lies the green-eyed monster called "race." Race, as often expressed within the context of Fiji, is said to be a crude fact of life. One that challenges and tests political beliefs, attitudes and institutions and above all, sets into motion social forces for change.

It is within this context that we seek to understand the latest "cross-cultural consensus" which, according to a segment of the population, was born and nurtured in secrecy by the political leaders who, with both a misguided view of the future and of the country's past, encouraged only peripheral participation from the civil society. As a result, Fiji has a consensus by the political leaders for the political leaders. This consensus is communal in nature and therefore rests on a fragile base. It seeks to integrate people by emphasizing their differences, rather than a sense of common purpose. It aims to create and sustain a myth of "cross-cultural consensus" in an environment charged with inter and intra-ethnic suspicion. It overtly chooses to ignore past experiences by promoting a false sense of optimism and besides that, it is extremely partisan and elitist.

During the Constitutional debates in Canada in 1987 to 1990, known as the Meech Lake, then Premier of Newfoundland, Clyde Wells, made a remarkable observation. He unequivocally stated that consensus can never be achieved through a "closed-door process." A process, where a group of political leaders, presumably acting in the best interest of the nation, agree to constitutional changes without full consultation of the masses. While Meech Lake was defeated and so was subsequent constitutional endeavours in Canada, Fiji's political leaders successfully, without any meaningful public debate or referendum, achieved constitutional consensus in just ten years, after a military coup in which a democratically elected government was overthrown. Remarkable as it may seem, the constitutional consensus among the political leaders was seen as reflecting the general aspiration of the community. In reality this was far from the truth.

It all began in 1993 when the government moved to draw up a terms of reference for the review of the 1990 Constitution. At that time, the Fiji Labour Party remained steadfast in its opposition to the Terms of Reference for Constitution Review, which was seen by the National Federation Party as a light at the end of a long, dark tunnel. The consensus among the government, the National Federation Party and the General Voters Party paved the way for the establishment of a Constitution Review Commission that was appointed by the President of Fiji in 1994. However, at that time, many saw the constitution review as just another exercise in futility. Already Fiji had two post-coup constitution reviews- one in 1987 by Sir John Falvey and again in 1989 by Colonel Paul Manueli.

In fact, the constitution review was more important for the Fiji's Indian community, which saw its political rights smothered by a pro-indigenous Fijian 1990 Constitution. However, unfortunately, there was no consensus among the Fiji Indian leaders, who saw constitution review as a means to strengthen their communal position. On one side was the Leader of Opposition and the leader of the National Federation Party Jai Ram Reddy, who tirelessly advocated conciliation and accommodation. On the other side was the leader of the Fiji Labour Party Mahendra Chaudhry, who preached equal rights for all and vigourously attacked the government for failing to address the issue of agricultural leases and corruption.

After the 1992 general elections, the Fiji Labour Party supported Rabuka for Prime Ministership, following an agreement between the two for an immediate action on constitution, ALTA, VAT and labour reforms. A year later, the Fiji Labour Party accused the Prime Minister for contravening the spirit of the agreement and in June 1993, the Fiji Labour Party MPs worked out of the Parliament in protest. Following the Labour departure, the National Federation Party moved in and established a good rapport with the Prime Minister. Despite working with the government on the terms of reference for constitution review, the NFP continued to keep its distance from associating too closely with the government. This strategy paid off in the February 1994 elections, where the National Federation Party ran a single-theme campaign, accusing the Fiji Labour Party of betraying Fiji's Indian community by supporting Rabuka's bid for Prime Ministership. The NFP strategy worked and the FLP was reduced to seven MPs, after the elections.

Since then, the Fiji Labour Party persistently scrutinised the Leader of the National Federation Party and continued to express caution over the motives of Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka. However, there were signs that the NFP and the FLP were moving closer towards a coalition, following threats from Rabuka of a third military coup. Apart from that, the two parties agreed on a joint candidate for Labasa; late Munsami Chinkannu and for Ba; Gaffar Ahmed. Despite these positive developments and despite forwarding a joint submission to the Constitution Review Commission, the two parties started to wither away, during Joint Parliamentary Select Committee debates on the new constitution.

The Fiji Labour Party resolved that it will not accept anything less than the Constitution Review Commission Report, while the NFP advocated an "open-minded" approach; one that was devoid of any pre-conditions. In the end, Jai Ram Reddy agreed to give away one Fiji Indian seat to the General Voters, much to the frustration of his Fiji Labour Party counterpart. A majority of the JPSC representatives agreed that there be 46 communal seats and 25 common roll seats. This was a reversal of what was recommended in the CRC report. In the name of "cross-cultural consensus,' the final version was put to a vote in Parliament and the Fiji Labour Party reluctantly went with the majority, after registering its displeasure with the final document.

The Joint Parliamentary Select Committee on Constitution met and deliberated in secrecy. During marathon meetings in late 1996 and early 1997, the Fiji Times on a numerous occasion was cited for breach by the House of Representatives. People questioned the secrecy surrounding the work of the Select Committee and for some it was foregone conclusion that political representatives were busy protecting their own communal interest. Nevertheless, the 1997 Constitution is a vast improvement on the 1990 one. However, questions remain regarding the utility of a constitution that encourages communalism, while at the same time anticipating cross-cultural understanding. From the looks of it, the Constitution has further fragmented the indigenous Fijians into rival provincial and political camps. Not only the Fijians, the Fiji Indians, too, are equally mystified.

After the promulgation of the Constitution, the Leader of Opposition Jai Ram Reddy and Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka became best of friends. So much so that Reddy, for the first time in Fiji's history, gave a moving speech at the Great Council of Chiefs meeting in 1997, and assisted the Prime Minister in securing Fiji's re-entry into the Commonwealth, despite protest from the Fiji Labour Party. While Reddy was making long term political plans with Rabuka, the Fiji Labour Party moved closer to the Fijian Association Party, after the latter's failure to agree to a coalition with the SVT. In 1998, the new Party of National Unity was formed by the chiefs of Western Viti Levu and it was decided afterwards that three political parties-FLP,FAP, PANU join hands in a coalition and put a united front against the SVT/NFP and UGP.

Despite the emergence of grand coalitions, Fiji's ethnic communities remain fragmented as ever. There were some 20 odd political parties contesting the May 1999 general elections. On the list were: Soqosoqo Vakevulewa ni Taukei Party, Christian Democratic Alliance or Veitokani ni Lewenivanua Vakarisito Party, Fijian Nationalist, the Fijian Association Party, Party of National Unity, Natural Law Party, Party of Truth, Lio On Famor Rotuma Party, Viti Levu Dynamic Multi-Racial Democratic Party, Coalition of Independent Nationals Party (COIN), Farmers and General Workers Coalition Party, United National Labour Party, Fiji Labour Party, National Federation Party, and United Generals Party.

Despite a record number of political parties, the National Federation Party and the Fiji Labour Party engaged in a cut-throat campaign against each other. There wasn't a single moment when members of these parties exploited, vilified and accused each other of all sorts of things. The Fiji Labour Party accused the National Federation Party of bribing the voters and instilling fear in the Indian community by anticipating a military coup. In response, the NFP charged that the Fiji Labour Party had plans to merge with the Christian Democratic Alliance, which wanted to re-introduce Sunday observance.

The Christian Democratic Alliance was not amused by the National Federation Party suggestions and made it clear that it only wanted Sunday to be a day of rest for Christians and that it had no intention whatsoever of instructing non-Christian's on how to utilise their Sundays. Apart from this, the Christian Democratic Alliance became a serious thorn in the side of the Soqosoqo Vakevulewa ni Taukei Party.

The Christian Democrat candidates continually attacked the SVT, charging at all times that the party had lied and cheated its way to power. In a long list of complaints against the SVT, the Christian Democrats argued that the government was largely responsible for the National Bank of Fiji scandal, high unemployment, the Tony Stephens fiasco, escalating crime, and impoverishment of indigenous Fijians. In response, the SVT targeted the leader of the Christian Democrats, Poseci Bune, accusing him of misuse of office, during his tenure as Fiji's representative to the United Nations. However, the Democrats remained undeterred and one of its candidates, Napote Vere, claimed that there was a "mafia" group within the government and that plans were underway to ensure that the SVT held power at all cost.

While the SVT shrugged off suggestions from the Christian Democratic Alliance, it came increasingly under attack for using ministerial vehicles for political campaigns. Also under scrutiny was the recent wave of privatisation, which was seen as a recipe for further fueling unemployment in the country. Nevertheless, the SVT argued strongly in favour of its economic policies in light of mounting opposition, and before the polls started on May 8, 1999 candidates and party stalwarts took parting shots at their opponents.

The Leader of the National Federation Party argued in favour of a NFP/SVT/UGP government. Mr. Reddy said political parties knew what people wanted - jobs, good income, quality education and health services, a big reduction in crime and a sense of security. "But all these objectives can be realised only if investment takes place on a large scale to create jobs," he said. "For that to happen, the investors, foreign and local, must feel confident that the government formed after the next election is going to be supported by a majority of Fijians, Indians and General Voters. While Reddy was making a case for his coalition, the Minister for Finance, James Ah Koy, failed to turn up for a political debate on economic policy on May 6, 1999. The leader of the Fiji Labour Party on the other side predicted that his party will bag all 19 Indian communal seats, including 16 open seats. Meanwhile, Labour's coalition partner, the Fijian Association Party held a packed rally at Raiwaqa on May 5, 1999.

All in all, all parties predicted impressive results. On Saturday May 8, 1999 more than 400,000 voters begin to go to the polls under a voting system which was a first in Fiji's history. Under the Constitution, all parties winning at least eight seats should be invited to be part of Cabinet. The election was historic because of the introduction of the preferential voting system and compulsory voting. Supervisor of Elections Walter Rigamoto said that there were 437,195 voters on the roll, almost 100,000 more than those registered in the 1994 elections.

With a total of 304 candidates contesting 71 seats in the House of Representatives, the task of finalising the electoral roll was as arduous as setting up some 755 polling stations around the country. Apart from procedural and organisational hiccups, tempers flared up on May 7, 1999 after the Fiji Labour Party organisers objected to the NFP move to erect a party shed next to its rival. Nevertheless, the voting started in earnest on May 8, 1999 but the first day turned out to be a nightmare for both the voters and the poll organisers. Voting in the Western Division on the first day of the 1999 polls was marred by the long wait voters endured at polling stations. From Barotu Indian School outside Rakiraki to Ratu Filise Memorial School at Namatakula Village on the Coral Coast the story was the same. For hours voters queued outside polling stations before they finally reached the classroom where votes were cast. Reports from some polling stations revealed that votes were still being cast at around 10:00 p.m. At the Fiji School of Nursing polling station in Tamavua, voting concluded at 11:00 p.m. In other stations around Suva, voting hours were extended to 7.30 p.m. or 9:00 p.m.

Following the mess on Saturday, the Supervisor of Elections, Walter Rigamoto, conceded that there were problems and that more personnel will be hired to correct the shortcoming. However, a bigger problem emerged after allegations surfaced on voting irregularities and possible vote rigging. By Tuesday May 11, 1999 just about all political parties expressed deep concern over the way in which the poll was progressing. In the line of fire was none other than the Supervisor of Election, who was accused of being out of touch with his Returning Officers. By May 12, 1999 it was reported that voters continued to stand for long hours to cast their votes and in many cases, voters simply could not locate their names on the electoral roll. In a surprise turn of events an Indian voter's name appeared on a Fijian electoral roll, much to the amazement of the officials. Besides that some names were missing from electoral rolls, some names mixed up and not forwarded to the correct polling station, rolls were not available on time, and worst perhaps was insufficient ballot papers and a notable lack of direction from Returning Officers and their staff. In the midst of utter confusion, the Election Office remained steadfast in its decision not to extend the polling dates. Fiji Labour Party candidate, Dr. Ganesh Chand wrote to the Supervisor of Elections, protesting against the state of affairs at the polling stations. To make matters worse, a presiding officer was investigated for allegedly cheating and numerous allegations were made by the Nationalist Party members that the ballot boxes were not properly sealed. Joining the Nationalists was Party of National Unity general secretary Apisai Tora who on May 12, 1999 described as suspicious the manner in which a ballot box was not sealed at a polling station in Lautoka. Mr. Tora claimed polling officers at Andra Sangam polling station informed polling agents on Tuesday night that the ballot boxes would not be sealed until they were taken to Lautoka Police Station.

While the argument over the conduct of the polls heated up, Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka on May 14, 1999 predicted that his coalition could bag around 38 votes. However, Rabuka conceded that preferences were stacked against him and that the SVT/NFP/UGP coalition has to do well in the first count. Fijilive gave a moving summary of the week by arguing that no one seem to have lost in this election. Just about all political parties and candidates were celebrating.

The Election Result

The vote count started in earnest in the evening of May 15, 1999. By the 16th, it was clear that the Fiji Labour Party was going to bag a majority of the Indian communal seats. By the 17th, the SVT was in serious trouble and so was its coalition partner, the National Federation Party. By Tuesday May 18, 1999 the results were out. To much surprise of Fiji Labour Party supporters, the FLP won 37 seats; 19 Indian Communal Seats and 18 Open Seats. The Fijian Association Party won 10 seats with Party of National Unity securing 4 seats. On the other front, the National Federation Party was annihilated, but its coalition partner SVT bagged 8 seats and the United General Party won 2. The Christian Democratic Alliance won 3 seats and the Nationalists wisked away 2. One seat went to Rotuma and there were five Independents elected.

Following the final vote count, the Fiji Labour Party convened a meeting, where members-elect agreed that Mahendra Chaudhry be nominated for Prime Ministership Unfortunately, FLP's coalition partners, Fijian Association and Party of National Unity were not happy with the decision. The leader of the Party of National Unity, Apisai Tora, criticised the Indians for bloc voting. A similar sentiment was echoed by the outgoing Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka, who tendered in his resignation to His Excellency the President of Fiji on May 18, 1999. In a speech to the nation that afternoon, Rabuka expressed concern over the way in which Indians voted for the Fiji Labour Party. Also lamenting over the results was the leader of the National Federation Party Jai Ram Reddy, who stated that he accepted the verdict of the people.

While Chaudhry was busy organising his new cabinet, Fijian political parties lashed out at the Fiji Labour Party. The Christian Democrat's Poseci Bune called for Fijian parties to unite. A similar call was made by the Nationalist Party leader Sakeasi Butadroka. Meanwhile, the Fijian Association Party advised the Fiji Labour Party that it wanted Adi Kuini Speed to become Prime Minister, failing which it was willing to sever its ties with the FLP. However, the FLP reminded its coalition partners that it was agreed beforehand that the party winning the most seat will choose from within its ranks a candidate for Prime Minister. While the debate on who shall be the Prime Minister waged on, Mahendra Chaudhry on May 19, 1999 at 11:00 a.m. was sworn in by the President as the first Prime Minister of Fiji of Indian origin.

Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhry is a distinguished trade unionist and a founding father of Fiji Labour Party. Chaudhry was elected to Parliament in the April 1987 general elections and held Finance Minister's portfolio before being deposed in a military coup on May 14, 1999. Since then, Chaudhry remained at the forefront of politics, constantly agitating for democratic reforms. In 1991, Chaudhry organised nation wide strikes against the Interim-Government's Sugar Masters Award. In addition to that he was instrumental in campaigning against the racist 1990 Constitution. In 1992, Chaudhry was elected as a Member of Parliament and continued to fight for social change. Among his most notable motions were the ones on corruption and for a select committee on ALTA. In 1996, Chaudhry remained steadfast in his resolve to lobby for a full implementation of the Reeves Commission Report on the Constitution. In 1997, he fought hard to ensure that drought stricken farmers were forwarded loans on generous terms, and remained an overt critic of privatisation and corporatisation.

After Chaudhry was sworn in as the Prime Minister of Fiji, the Fijian Association Party accepted the Fiji Labour Party's endorsement of Adi Kuini Speed of the Fijian Association Party and Dr. Tupeni Baba of the Fiji Labour Party as the Deputy Prime Ministers of Fiji. On 20 May both were sworn in by the President. Meanwhile reports surfaced that arsonists had targeted the Department of Lands at the Government Building on the night of May 19, 1999. "The fire was noticed at about 7:38 p.m. But, quick action from police and the fire department helped control the blaze. Deputy Chief Fire officer Isireli Qasenivalu said they have ruled out the possibility that the fire was caused by an electric fault."

By May 21, 1999 the Party of National Unity agreed to join the Fiji Labour Party and the Fijian Association Party. Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhry went a step further and invited SVT and the Christian Democrats to join in what is truly a "Government of National Unity." Under the 1997 constitution, only those parties securing 10 percent of the total votes may be invited to join cabinet. However, Chaudhry argued that for the sake of unity and stability, it was imperative that other parties be invited. While the Christian Democrats considered and agreed to a formal offer from PM Chaudhry to join his cabinet, the SVT had other plans. Party leader Sitiveni Rabuka called for four cabinet ministers to be selected from his party, including the post of Deputy Prime Minister. In fact, this was impossible and Chaudhry decided to go ahead without the SVT.

On 21 May, the new cabinet was announced.

CABINET MINISTERS

PORTFOLIO

ASSISTANT MINISTERS

Following the announcement of the cabinet, arsonists stepped up their activities and over the period of two days a number of properties, including schools were torched Among those targeted were Saraswati Primary School, Korociriciri Primary, Shreedhar School, SVT office in Nausori, a warehouse at Lakeba Street, a house at Belo Street, a house at Kula Street and Indira Gandhi Primary School.

A building on Gordon Street was also partly damaged after fire started from it's kitchen. Police, however, found a 45 year old watchman dead outside the building while the fire officers were trying to contain the fire. On May 23, 1999 Fiji Police confirmed that an election candidate was suspected of being behind the recent spate of arson. The individual was caught in Nausori and after interrogation, he named two others. Altogether seven people have been charged with arson and the accused appeared in Suva Magistrates Court on May 25. On May 26, 1999 another five were arrested by police as plans got underway to counter illegal activities of suspected trouble makers. High on the list was the Nationalist Party, which spearheaded a protest march against the government on May 29, 1999. In another development, anti-government groups have now banded together and formed the Taukei United Front. The group plans to hold a number of public demonstrations and argue that Fijian interest will be compromised under the Chaudhry government.

While election losers were busy stirring up the populace, Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhry waived $41 million given to cane farmers as part of a Crop Rehabilitation Programme. In addition to that, the Prime Minister pledged revitalisation of the sugar industry and a halt to a planned mass sacking of Fiji Sugar Corporation (FSC) employees. Not only the sugar industry, but some 500 workers of the former Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji will also retain their job.

Apart from the Prime Minister, the Minister for Local Government Dr. Ganesh Chand abrogated the redundancy policy of Housing Authority and reinstated redundant workers. On May 24, 1999 the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forest, Poseci Bune, laid down the government's vision for the agricultural sector. For Bune, the government sought to stimulate and encourage agro-industries and as a result create more jobs. With the Ministers settling in to their respective portfolios, the Leader of Opposition, Ratu Inoke Kubuabola, was officially sworn in on May 24, 1999. Ratu Inoke takes over from Sitiveni Rabuka, who resigned as party leader on May21, 1999.

As the political climate settled, the government moved quickly in assuring the people of Fiji on its election promises. In what may be termed as a radical transformation of Fiji, the government has moved to highlight key focus areas which it will be concentrating for the next five years. High on the list is the amicable resolution of the agricultural leases, a restructure of Fiji's dilapidated health infrastructure, social benefits for the poor and the needy, a minimum wage legislation, a comprehensive housing policy, a review of taxation laws, strengthening of fisheries, mining and agricultural sectors, developing tourism, and reducing interest rates on home loans. Apart from these, the government is going to re-evaluate Value Added Tax (VAT) and eliminate tax on food.

FIJI GENERAL ELECTIONS RESULTS

Fijian Provincial Communal

Bua Fijian

Miteli Bulanauca (VLV) 54.73%

Kadavu Fijian

James Ah Koy (SVT) 83.40%

Lau Fijian

Adi Koila Mara (VLV) 50.82%

Adi Koila defeated SVT's Viliame Cavubati who polled 47.51%

Lomaiviti Provincial

Simione Kaitani (IND) 54.6%

Macuata Fijian

Poseci Bune (VLV) 3.71%

Bune defeated SVT's Ratu Josefa Dimuri who was at 46.29%

Nadroga/Navosa Fijian

Leone Uisowaqa (FAP) 50.65%

Leone polled 6621 against SVT's Seruwaiya Hong Tiy who finished second on 5366 votes.

Naitasiri Fijian

Peceli Rinakama (FAP) 1.21%

Peceli polled some 6403 votes against SVT's Kavekini Navuso who secured 2589 in the second count.

Namosi Fijian

Antonio Tanaburenisau (FAP) 56.54%

In Namosi Antonio polled 1309 after second count against SVT's Kiniviliame Taukeinikoro who secured 43.41%

Ra Fijian

Eloni Goneyali (PANU) 52.98%

Eloni had an uphill battle with Nationalist Evoloni Bogi who polled 47.02%.

Rewa Fijian

Timoci Qiolevu Silatolu (FAP) 59.70%

Timoci defeated firebrand Sakeasi Butadroka who lost to preferences, polling 40.30%

Serua Fijian

Lepani Tonitonivanua (NP) 62.72%

Lepani 2098 votes defeated Maisale Driubalavu (SVT) who polled 1171votes

Ba East Fijian

Ponipate Lesavua (PANU) 4413 votes 52.55% in the first count against SVT's Isimeli Bose's 2932.

Ba West Fijian

Meli Bogileka (PANU) polled 6587 in second count 65.53%

Meli defeated SVT's Ratu Etuate Tavai who polled 34.47% after preferences were distributed.

Tailevu North Fijian

Savenaca Taukeinavo (SVT) 53.63%

After progressive count Savenaca polled 3995 votes against FAP's Ratu Josefa Serulagilagi 3454

Tailevu South Fijian

Esira Rabunao (FAP) 3810 votes 53.58%

Esira defeated SVT's Lagisoa Delana who polled 2871votes (40.38%)

Cakaudrove East Fijian

Inoke Kubuabola (SVT) secured 78.66% or 5135 votes winning the seat in the first count.

Cakaudrove West Fijian

Kinijoji Maivalili (SVT) 5460 votes 68.94%

North East Fijian Urban Fijian

Isireli Leweniqila (SVT) 5418 votes in the second count 53.21%

Isireli defeated FAP's Semi Servakula and VLV's Taniela Tabu who got 20% of the votes.

North West Fijian Urban

Akanisi Koroitamana (PANU) 8297votes in second count 67.23%

Akanisi defeated SVT's Vilisoni Cagimaivei 32.77%

South West Fijian Urban

Isimeli Jale Cokanasiga (FAP) 5311 votes in second count 56.78%

Isimeli defeated SVT's Kelemedi Bulewa who secured 43.24% of the votes.

Suva City Fijian Urban

Viliame Volavola (FAP) 5311 in second count 57.78%

Vili defeated SVT's Filipe Bole who secured 3800 or 42.22% of the total votes.

Tamavua/Laucala Fijian

Ema Tagicakibau (FAP) 5489 votes in second count 54.81%

Ema defeated SVT's Jonetani Kaukimoce who polled 4525 votes (45.19%)

Nasinu Fijian Urban

Jioji Uluinakauvadra (FAP) 4587 votes 50.42%

Jioji defeated SVT's Apolosi Biuvakaloloma who polled 4509 votes after preferences.

INDIAN COMMUNAL SEATS

VitiLevu East/Maritime

Krishna Chand Sharma (FLP) 4011 votes 62.69%

Dhirendra Kumar (NFP) 2382 votes 37.31%

Tavua

Anand (FLP) 5463 votes 75.43%

Narendra Reddy (NFP) 1779 votes 24.57%

Ba East

Gaffar Ahmed (FLP) 6202 votes 73.56%

Ram Lajendra (NFP) 2229 votes 26.44%

Ba West

Ami Chand (FLP) 5545 votes 65.58%

Vinod Patel (NFP) 2910 votes 34.42%

Lautoka Rural

Anand Kumar Singh (FLP) 5422 votes 65.92%

Azmat Khan (NFP) 803 votes 34.08%

Lautoka City

Ganeshwar Chand (FLP) 6146 votes 61.34%

Jaganath Sami (NFP) 3720 votes 37.12%

Vuda

Vinod Chandra Deo Maharaj (FLP) 6936 votes 73.1%

Swani Kumar Maharaj (NFP) 2352 votes 24.7%

Nadi Urban

Amjad Ali (FLP) 6829 votes 65.69%

Dorsami Naidu (NFP) 3567 votes 34.31%

Nadi Rural

Shiu Sharan Sharma (FLP) 5359 votes 66.1%

Dewendra Pratap (NFP) 2768 votes 33.9%

Nadroga

Lekh Ram Vayeshnoi (FLP) 5647 votes 61.06%

Mohammed Azam Khalil (NFP) 3601 votes 38.94%

VitLevu South

Prince Gopal Lakshman (FLP) 3992 votes 63.84%

Maan Singh (NFP) 2262 votes 36.17%

Suva City

Deo Narain (FLP) 6549 votes 56.17%

Wadan Lal Narsey (NFP) 5111 votes 43.83%

Vanua Levu West

Anup Kumar (FLP) 4630 votes 61.3%

Biman Chand Prasad (NFP) 2912 votes 38.6%

Laucala

Hikmat Singh Verma (FLP) 8816 votes 77.8%

Attar Singh (NFP) 2510 votes 22.16%

Nasinu

Pratap Chand (FLP) 7725 votes 73.61%

Vijendra Prakash (NFP) 2735 votes 26.06%

Tailevu/Rewa

Ragho Nand (FLP) 5381 votes 57.6%

Aptar Singh (NFP) 3605 votes 38.59%

Labasa

Muthu Swami (FLP) 4037 votes 50.07%

Keshwan Padayach (NFP) 1756 votes 21.78%

Charan Jeath Singh (UNLP) 1181 votes 14.65%

Labasa Rural

Mohammed Lateef (FLP) 5814 votes 71.97%

Mohammed Rafiq (NFP) 1772 votes 21.93%

Macuata East/Cakaudrove

Gyannendra Prasad (FLP) 4203 votes 59.84%

Satish Gulabdas (NFP) 2297 votes 32.70%

Open Seats

In 99% of the open seats candidates were unable to secure 50+1 in the first count.

Tailevu/North Ovalau

Viliame Sausawau (NP) 6878 after preferences 50.01%

In a close contest Viliame defeated FAP's Tu'uakitau Cokanauto (FAP) 6876 votes 49.99%

In a recount on 1/06/99, Cokanauto won the seat for the Fijian Association Party.

Tailevu/South Lomaiviti

Isireli Mokunitulevu Vuibau (FLP) 8759 votes 55.92%

Isireli defeated Epenisa Cakobau (SVT) 6905 votes 44.08%

Nausori/Naitasiri

Lavenia Padarath (FLP) 6747 in second count 50.04%

Lavenia defeated NFP's Mirdula Sainath who polled 4123 votes 30.58%

Nasinu/Rewa

John Ali (FLP) 7277 votes 50.68%

John defeated Harnam Singh (NFP) 27.65%

Cunningham

Joeli Kalou (FLP) 6741votes after second count 50.23%

Joeli Kalou defeated Berendao Vunibobo (SVT) 4468 or 33.33%

Laucala

Suruj Mati Nand (FLP) 6395 votes 50.17%

Mosese Uluicicia of SVT polled 4266 votes or 33.47%

Samabula/Tamavua

Dr. Tupeni Baba (FLP) 7750 votes after preferences 58.37%

USP Professor Dr. Baba defeated James Raman (NFP) 5528 votes or 41.63%

Suva City

Ofa Duncan (UGP) 6723 votes after preferences 55.66%

Ofa Duncan defeated Kenneth Zinck (FLP) who polled 5357 votes (44.34%)

Lami Open

Michael Columbus (FLP) 6940 votes after preferences 56.20%

Unionist Michael Columbus defeated Mere Samisoni (SVT) 43.8%

Lomaivanua/Namosi/Kadavu

Konisi Yabaki (SVT) 8628 votes 57.28%

Konisi defeated Ted Young of the FAP

Ra

George Shiu Raj (IND) 8725 votes 60.06%

George defeated Sangeet Maharaj (FLP) 5803 (39.94%)

Tavua

Pravin Singh (FLP) secured 6803 votes in the first count 50.22%

Ba

Mahendra Chaudhry (FLP) 10,358votes 60.97%

Chaudhry defeated fellow unionist Dewan Shankar (NFP) who polled 5,285 votes 31.1%

Magodro

Jag Narain Sharma (FLP) 9940 votes 66.05%

Jag Narain defeated NFP's Shiu Charan who polled 33.94% of the votes

Lautoka City

Haroon Ali (FLP) 9799 votes after preferences 64.01%

Haroon Ali defeated Savitri Chauhan (NFP) 5488 vote 35.9%

Vuda

Tevita Moemoedonu (FLP) 8978 votes 57.71%

Nadi

Pradhuman Raniga (FLP) 11,773 votes after preferences 66.84%

Mr. Raniga defeated Manjuwati Verma 33.16%

Yasawa/Nawaka

Gunasagran Gounder (FLP) 9453 votes in second count 66.88%

Mr. Gounder defeated Jai Ram Reddy (NFP) who polled 33.12%

Nadroga

Mosese Volavola (FLP) 7907 votes after preferences 55.22%

Mosese defeated Sakiusa Makutu (SVT) 6411 votes (44.78%)

Serua/Navosa

Kuini Vuikaba Speed (FAP) 9207 votes after preferences 56.87%

Bua/Macuata

Manoa Bale (FLP) 9290 votes 60.45%

Labasa

Naresh Kumar (FLP) 7043 votes 51.84%

Macuata East

Krishna Datt (FLP) 8807 votes 58.92%

Mr.Datt defeated Pramod Chand (NFP) 27%

Cakaudrove West

Sitiveni Rabuka (SVT) 9190 votes 69.92%

Lau/Taveuni/Rotuma

Naiqama Lalabalavu (SVT) 7911 votes 57.96%

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment