28 Sep 2005

Get jailed parliamentarians off state payroll, says Fiji senator

7:43 pm on 28 September 2005

A Fiji opposition senator says the government ought not to be keeping its jailed senators on the state payroll.

Apisai Tora was sentenced to eight months in jail for seizing a military checkpoint and setting up a roadblock near Nadi at the height of the coup.

Statistics show the Fiji taxpayer spends about two US dollars on each prisoner per day.

The Fiji taxpayer is spending about 30 US dollars on each senator per day.

Doctor Atu Emberson-Bain says it's obvious which of those payments the Fiji taxpayer would rather make towards Tora's maintenance.

"Public funds should not be spent in this way, and it's an indication of sort of poor leadership on the part of the prime minister, that he's not requiring his ministers or appointees to the senate to resign."