Fair Re­port­ing of Credit Bill Passed

Fiji Sun - - Parliament News - ARIETA VAKASUKAWAQA Edited by Manasa Kalouniv­iti Feed­back: arieta.vakasukawaqa@fi­jisun.com.fj

The Gov­ern­ment eas­ily pushed through the Fair Re­port­ing of Credit Bill un­der Stand­ing Or­der 51 in Par­lia­ment yes­ter­day af­ter hours of fiery de­bate. The bill was passed with 30 votes to 13 while seven did not vote. At­tor­ney-Gen­eral Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said the law guar­an­teed right to pri­vacy for or­di­nary Fi­jians.

He also said it also en­sured that all credit re­port­ing agen­cies would have to seek li­cens­ing from the Re­serve Bank of Fiji and have their data quar­an­tined. Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said there was a need for or­di­nary Fi­jians to be given a clean slate. “Some­times when a cus­tomer wants to lay by a cer­tain item from a hard­ware com­pany; they are pro­hib­ited from pur­chas­ing the item be­cause they have been listed as a de­fault debtor un­der the Data Bureau,” he said. Op­po­si­tion MP Niko Nawaikula said: “It seems the bill is at­tack­ing a sin­gle com­pany which was the Data Bureau; they need to be con­sulted and so is the public; there is a need for this to hap­pen.” Mr Nawaikula re­vealed a let­ter re­ceived from Data Bureau stat­ing they were not con­sulted and the com­pany was not aware of the bill. But Speaker to Par­lia­ment Dr Jiko Lu­veni or­dered Mr Nawaikula to re­frain from read­ing the con­tent of let­ter fur­ther as it needed to be authen­ti­cated be­fore it was brought be­fore Par­lia­ment. The A-G also re­futed Mr Nawaikula’s claims and that he had re­ceived the let­ter as claimed by the Data Bureau. Min­is­ter for In­dus­try and Trade, Faiyaz Koya said there was a need for such bill for credit re­port­ing to be done ac­cu­rately so that or­di­nary Fi­jians could ac­cess as­sis­tance from fi­nan­cial in­sti­tu­tions. Mean­while the A-G con­cluded his ar­gu­ment say­ing: “Give or­di­nary Fi­jians a break and let them have ac­cess to credit; why should we give cred­i­bil­ity to some­thing that doesn’t have cred­i­bil­ity,” he said.

Some­times when a cus­tomer wants to lay by a cer­tain item from a hard­ware com­pany; they are pro­hib­ited from pur­chas­ing the item be­cause they have been listed as a de­fault debtor un­der the Data Bureau.

Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum

At­tor­ney-Gen­eral and Min­is­ter for Fi­nance

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