8 Sep 2006

Fiji's Chaudhry backs minister's call for PM to resign

4:58 pm on 8 September 2006

The Fiji Labour Party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry, has backed a call by the minister for public enterprises, Robin Irwin, to sack the prime minister and the finance minister for the lamentable state of the economy in the country's north.

The Fijilive website quotes Mr Chaudhry as saying Mr Irwin's call for the sacking of the two ministers should not come as a surprise.

He says Mr Irwin's statement demonstrates courage on his part, adding that the SDL government had not achieved anything for the last five years.

Mr Chaudhry says the SDL government does not have the drive and the ability to move the country forward which has resulted in the poor state of the economy now.

Mr Irwin told the Fiji Tourism Forum in Nadi yesterday the country has a high-cost business environment, with high airfares and port and telecommunications charges.

Mr Irwin said the infrastructure is generally poor, the army interferes in the government and there is extensive regulation.

He said after his address he might no longer be a cabinet minister but he relished he prospect of going home to Svusavu and doing some fishing.