12 May 2003

National Federation Party says code of conduct for politicians and laws on party fundraising are nee

3:48 pm on 12 May 2003

Fiji's National Federation Party says it will push for the introduction of a code of conduct covering politicians.

The NFP leader, Prem Singh, says this is overdue and politicians must have rules to ensure accountability and transparency.

The NFP is also calling for legislation to limit donor contributions to a political party and to make a party's fundraising activities transparent.

This comes after revelations that the prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, and four cabinet ministers had formed a company, Duavata Initiative Ltd, as an fundraising tool for their ruling SDL party.

Mr Singh says laws must be introduced to stop the possibility of large donors seeking favours from the government in return for their handouts to the company.

"The initiatives by the government will lead to corrupt practices...we are very much worried that the Government's payback system is being institutionalised..we are trying to force the Government to have legislation whereby the political parties can have a limit to what people can give, and a code of conduct bill also needs to be implemented"

Prem Singh - leader of Fiji's National Federation Party