15 Jun 2006

Dissent within Fiji's Labour Party ranks over coalition protocol

6:24 pm on 15 June 2006

The deputy leader of the Fiji Labour Party and minister for the environment, Poseci Bune, says fellow minister Lekh Ram Vyashnoi's public attacks on the government reflect the views of the party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry.

Mr Bune has told Radio Legend Mr Vyashnoi is a party man and echoes the sentiments of the party and its leader.

But Mr Bune adds that Mr Vyashnoi is barking up the wrong tree in his public attacks because Labour accepted the prime minister's invitation to enter into a multi-party cabinet without conditions.

He says if Mr Vyashnoi has any quarrel, it is with the Labour Party, not with the SDL.

Mr Bune says whenever issues come up, these will be discussed at cabinet level and sorted out there.

Mr Bune says ministers are entirely in the hands of the prime minister who is responsible for discipline and cabinet management.

Mr Qarase says he will speak with Mr Vyashnoi soon about cabinet protocol and procedures.

But Mr Vyashnoi remains adamant that he will continue speaking his mind, regardless of the views of other Labour Party ministers