20 Aug 2014

Parking offence rules Fiji party leader out of polls

7:33 am on 20 August 2014

The leader of Fiji's United Freedom party Jagath Karunaratne says he has been rejected as a candidate for the elections because of a seven year old parking offence.

He was one of twelve nominees rejected as a candidate for the September polls by the Fijian Elections Office but he has appealed against the decision.

Mr Karunaratne says the decision was surprising because he paid the fine and the offence did not involve a jail term of more than a year.

He also faces sedition charges but says that process is still to go to court.

Mr Karunaratne says he thought there might have been a question over his citizenship.

"At the moment I am a dual citizen of New Zealand. I expected may be that could be a reason if there is going to be any to reject my application. But I've already informed them I have initiated the process and the rest is beyond my control."

Mr Karunaratne says he will continue to lead the party even if his appeal is not successful.