20 Sep 2005

Another call in Fiji for fisheries minister to go over failed project

1:48 pm on 20 September 2005

There's been another call in Fiji for the sacking of the fisheries minister, Konisi Yabaki, after the cabinet dumped a multi-million dollar Japanese-funded jetty project.

The managing director of Fiji Fish Limited, Graham Southwick, says the Lami jetty project should not have got off the ground in the first place because the ministry had been told that the site was inappropriate.

The cabinet decision followed years of opposition to the project by residents and landowners in Lami, which is close to Suva, who threatened to file a High Court injunction to stop it going ahead.

Mr Southwick says Mr Yabaki and others in the ministry should be sacked for their roles in the project.

"I suspect that they're not going to walk away from this thing, scot free. I wouldn't presume to tell the prime minister what to do with the minister who has caused this kind of problem. But, it's not the first problem that this ministry has caused. They've been a constant embarrassment for four years over various issues, and I think the prime minister knows what he's got to do."

Mr Southwick says he doesn't know if the Japanese will continue with the project because of the embarrassment caused by the government's changing positions.