23 Jun 2005

By-election not needed for seat vacated by jailed Fiji MP

8:11 pm on 23 June 2005

The parliamentary seat left vacant by the jailing of Fiji's former deputy speaker of the Lower House, Ratu Rakuita Vakalabure, has been filled without a by-election.

Only the ruling SDL party and its coalition partner, the Conservative Alliance Matanitu Vanua, had filed nominations to contest the Cakaudrove West Fijian seat.

When no other party filed nominations, the SDL withdrew its candidate in favour of the Conservative Alliance one within the 24-hour period that is allowed after nominations.

The new MP is the former NLTB lawyer, Niko Nawaikula, who is now in private practice specialising in native land cases.

The unopposed election has saved the state nearly 280-thousand US dollars.