No Plans for 2022 Elec­tion, I Will Work on Uni­fy­ing Party: Ratu Epenisa

Fiji Sun - - NATION - INOKE RABONU Edited by Ivamere Nataro

Newly-elected SODELPA Pres­i­dent Ratu Epenisa Cakobau has his eyes set on uni­fy­ing the party.

He made the com­ment when asked if he was plan­ning to con­test the 2022 gen­eral elec­tions.

Ratu Epenisa was elected un­op­posed dur­ing the party’s spe­cial gen­eral meet­ing at the Novo­tel Con­ven­tion Cen­tre in Lami yes­ter­day.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the 28 con­stituen­cies and sev­eral SODELPA Mem­bers of Par­lia­ment were present dur­ing the meet­ing.

Ratu Epenisa said he was al­ways ready to serve the peo­ple.

Roko Tui Dreketi and party Mem­ber

of Par­lia­ment, Ro Tei­mumu Kepa, said she would not con­test the 2022 Gen­eral Elec­tions.

She said she wanted to pro­vide the op­por­tu­nity for the youths to rep­re­sent the peo­ple in Par­lia­ment. Mean­while, gen­eral sec­re­tary Emele Duitu­turaga said the party was in for a fresh start leav­ing all its dif­fer­ences be­hind. Ms Duitu­turaga said SODELPA was ready to gov­ern Fiji.

Other mem­bers, who were elected un­op­posed, were:

■ Pres­i­dent Ratu Epenisa Cakobau;

■ Vice Pres­i­dent 1 Ro Tei­mumu Kepa; and

■ Vice Pres­i­dent 2 Ratu Naiqama Lal­a­bal­avu.

Vice Pres­i­dent 3 George Shiu Raj, how­ever, was elected ahead of Ratu

Jone Le­suma.

These new of­fice bear­ers will serve a term of two years in of­fice. Party gen­eral sec­re­tary Emele Duitu­turaga said there was a 21 days no­tice that had not in­cluded the elec­tion of the party’s of­fice bear­ers, how­ever there were mo­tions tabled from the floor to hold its elec­tions yes­ter­day.

“At the be­gin­ning we had to ad­dress who would pre­side over the meet­ing, and our con­sti­tu­tion was very clear that it was sup­posed to be a pres­i­dent or vice pres­i­dent and be­cause we had ca­sual va­can­cies in those po­si­tions there was a de­ci­sion to hold the elec­tions to­day so that is what the Gen­eral Assem­bly pre­ceded to do,” she said.

“The out­come of the elec­tions to­day has ob­vi­ously united the party.

“The mood of the Gen­eral Assem­bly and the ac­cep­tance of the ap­point­ments makes my life a lot eas­ier. Our prepa­ra­tion for the 2022 gen­eral elec­tions has be­gun to­day.”

Care­taker party leader Si­tiveni Rabuka said they had abided by all con­sti­tu­tional re­quire­ments dur­ing the meet­ing.

“We tried to ap­ply the vanua ap­proach, while that was a good ap­proach we had to be care­ful that we work with the con­sti­tu­tion of the party,” he said.

He said the meet­ing had also re­solved that the Novem­ber an­nual gen­eral meet­ing would con­firm the name of the new party leader.

“The process was ap­proved to­day, the ad­ver­tise­ment will close on Au­gust 12.”

Photo: Inoke Rabonu

Newly-elected party of­fi­cials (from left) Vice Pres­i­dent 3 George Shiu Raj, Vice Pres­i­dent 2 Ratu Naiqama Lal­a­bal­avu, Party Pres­i­dent Ratu Epenisa Cakobau, Vice Pres­i­dent 1 Ro Tei­mumu Kepa and care­taker party Leader Si­tiveni Rabuka.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Fiji

© PressReader. All rights reserved.