13 Oct 2006

Fiji's PM sacks minister of state for youth and sport

7:50 am on 13 October 2006

Fiji's prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, has sacked his minister of state for youth and sport, Rajesh Singh.

A statement issued by the Prime Minister's Office says Mr Qarase had advised the president to terminate Mr Singh's appointment because he had not been cooperating with his supervising minister, Ro Teimumu Kepa, and with the cabinet as a whole.

Last night Mr Singh, who is from Mr Qarase's ruling SDL party, said he had not been informed of the decision.

The Fiji Sun quotes him as saying it was a pity the prime minister went behind his back to the president when he said a totally different thing on television.

Mr Singh said he would go and visit his paramount chief, Ratu Inoke Takiveikata, in Suva Prison this morning and inform him of what has happened.

He said he will also see the chiefs of Tamavua today and hold a news conference to announce the steps they advise him to take.

Last Friday, Ratu Inoke wrote to the minister saying Mr Singh was being pressured by his superior minister and chief executive, the allegations against him were unjustified and fabricated, and any move to sack him would be a formula for catastrophe.