2 Aug 2002

Minister sees nothing wrong in calling Indo-Fijians weeds

4:45 pm on 2 August 2002

Fiji's minister for women and social welfare has struck back at criticism of comments she made in parliament.

Adi Asenaca Caucau likened Indo-Fijians to weeds taking up too much space during a speech in parliament this week.

The Fiji Women's Crisis Centre and other NGOs have called for her to apologize and resign.

The leader of the United General Party, Mick Beddoes, says that misguided people who spout racisim and hatred while calling themselves Christians, are possesed by the devil.

But Ms Caucau says the various organisations are apolitical and should not be commenting.

And she says Mr Beddoes has no credibility in her eyes.

"Who is he...he may be a member of the Opposition who is saying he has some roots in Fiji and claiming he is Fijian, but we do not consider him as such... so it doesn't matter to me, but the thing is we respect the views of people, however when they try to point political fingers and make comments we won't even give it a second thought ...I have every right..I am a daughter of a chief in my country."

Adi Asenaca Caucau