While I have avoided obscenities in my commentaries, the headline above is the exception to the rule. I have decided to go down into the gutter only because our bullying former military brass and the dysfunctional Fiji First government have suddenly decided that the use of the F word in public is offensive.
In fact they are so offended by the F word purportedly being used by a woman, Karen Seaton, a Koro freehold landowner that their chain of command has decided that deportation is a fair and proportionate response to the dreaded utterance allegedly passing through Ms Seaton’s lips.
Yet they are very familiar with this kind of foul language from their very own coup leader and Prime Minister. He got on to the public record with the F word, not once, or twice but multiple times…
Here are a few examples to jog your memory.
‘Don’t f*ck with the military, Lamus*na’ – as he threatened and assaulted former Chairman of the Public Service Commission Stuart Huggett near the military offices at Berkley Crescent in Suva.
Then there was his message to former PM Qarase through one of the democratically elected PM’s senior officials ‘you people f*ck each other, your time is over’ .
Of course his most famous tirade of F word abuse was directed at that fearless champion of the poor and ordained man of God Father Kevin Barr: ‘You anti-Government f*cked up priest’. This was in reaction to a tongue in cheek letter to the editor by Father Barr on the flag change issue suggesting the Union Jack might be replaced by the Chinese flag?
But nothing happened to the Prime Minister for using the F word in real and menacing threats against people.
Yet they deport Karen Seaton for allegedly using the word against the President. This of course is assumed because what really happened has not been established. The version I have is different from the one they are using to justify their ‘over the top’ action.
But here’s the thing: Both the PM and Acting PM repeat ad nauseam that people are equal under their imposed 2013 constitution. You would think so when you read the BILL OF RIGHTS Sec 6 (1) which states that the constitution quote ‘ binds the legislature, executive and judicial branches of government at all levels and every person performing the function of any public office.
So this means every official who participated in the breaking into Karen Seaton’s room, her detention and deportation are bound by this provision of the Constitution and therefore obliged to protect Karen Seaton and ensure her rights to:-
Sec 9 Right to Personal Liberty; Sec 11 Freedom from cruel and degrading treatment; Sec14 Rights of accused persons: where in (2) it states quote ‘Every person charged with an offense has the right to be (a) presumed innocent until proven guilty according to law. (b) Be informed in writing in a language that she understands, of the nature and reasons for the charge. (c) Be given adequate time and facilities to prepare a defense (f) to a public trial before a court of law.
Sec 15 Access to courts or tribunals in (1) it states quote ‘every person charged with an offense has the right to a fair trial before a court of law. Sec 17 Freedom of speech, expression and publication. Sec 18 Freedom of assembly; Sec 19 Freedom of Association.
I count 7 rights of Karen Seaton under the BILL OF RIGHTS in the imposed 2013 constitution have been breached. So if the authors of the constitution and their officials are adopting ‘selective compliance’ to their constitutions provisions, then they all know that we are not equal under it as the constitution intended, because of their unwillingness to just do what is right.
What this shameful, disgraceful and cowardly action by the Fiji First government shows is that 10 years on from their coup, they remain so scared of the people they not only have maintained their 24/7 security; in some cases they have increased it? Yet claim to have won the popular vote in 2014 fair and square. So who are they afraid of? Surely not a solitary lady like Karen Seaton?
I put it to you that what they fear the most is the TRUTH that the likes of Karen Seaton have to tell about the corruption, favoritism, nepotism and injustices that they engage in for the benefit of their aiders and abettors while ignoring the best interests of all our people, including the many expatriates who have made Fiji their home.