Fiji Attorney-General: Questions About Him, Ballot ‘Diversionary Tactics’

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Sayed-Khaiyum dismisses calls for resignation

By Felix Chaudhary

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, May 12, 2014) – Attorney-General and Minister for Elections Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said political parties were exposing themselves by commenting about him being in charge of the polls and also signing up as general secretary for the proposed Fiji First party.

He added they were using diversionary tactics like questioning the composition of the ballot paper and calling for his resignation because of a conflict of interest instead of focusing on real issues.

"The point is what are they talking about," he said.

"First it's the ballot paper which is an obfuscation, which is a diversion, and now they talking about resignation because I am the Minister for Elections. I cannot go and change the rules which have already been set.

"The other previous people were leaders of political parties and were ministers responsible for elections."

[PIR editor’s note: Fijilive reported that both former Prime Ministers Laisenia Qarase and Mahendra Chaudhry have disputed Sayed-Khaiyum’s characterization of their roles in previous elections. "Laisenia Qarase says he was never minister for elections and despite being the Prime Minister he neither interfered nor influenced the work of the Electoral Commission and the Elections Office." "Fiji Labour Party Leader Mahendra Chaudhry says the country did not have a Minister for Elections in the past and accused current Minister and Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum of misleading and misinforming the public."]

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