Sunday, July 23, 2006

Conflict of Interest

Clash of ideals- doctored image of the 2000 Fiji-post coup violence.

The root cause of the coup is land and the abuse of landowners. That issue was hijacked by provocateurs(using the agendas of the influential who had something to lose)the same circle who intended to take advantage of the situation using controlled chaos. This is when Liberty dies!

After numerous postings on S.i.F.M on the stained track record of dubious business practices by the trust administrator of native lands in Fiji. It appears that landowners are raising their level of vigilance with the Native Lands Trust Board (N.L.T.B). The same organization that has been breaching the cardinal rules of management ethical standards-conflict of interests.

Copy of the Fiji Times article on the issue.

Landowners query board loyalty
Monday, July 24, 2006

THE Native Lands Trust Board was last week required to provide landowners of one of the country's largest tourism developments the reassurance that they are committed to protecting landowners' interests.

NLTB's Deputy General Manager Operations, Semi Tabakanalagi was swamped with concerns regarding the loyalty of the board during a meeting with landowners from Sanasana Village in Sigatoka.

Seven landowning units from the village own the land on which the Natadola Marine Resort project is currently being developed. A delegation led by Mr Tabakanalagi traveled to the village on Thursday to address grievances raised by landowners.

However, during the meeting Mr Tabakanalagi and his team were bombarded with claims that the board was working more with the project developers and either ignoring or sacrificing landowners' interests.

Landowners' spokesman, former cabinet minister and senator, Apisai Tora said the four units he was representing were concerned about their rights and interests being sacrificed to ensure the project continued.

Mr Tora said a major concern of landowners was Keni Dakuidreketi's position with NLTB while being the main developer for the project.

"This is a clear case of conflict of interest and this has raised a lot of eyebrows within the landowning units of Sanasana."

"Since Mr Dakuidreketi is the main developer, we are concerned that all decisions made by the board would be made to see that the project went ahead regardless of whether our rights were sacrificed," he said.

"Even though NLTB is our trustee, it seems that it is pushing the company's interests," said Mr Tora.

"We have some grievances with several works that the developers are carrying out so how do you expect us to trust that the board will address our concerns when the developer is sitting on the board," Mr Tora asked.

Attempts to contact Mr Dakuidreketi yesterday were unsuccessful.

But Mr Tabakanalagi said there was nothing to worry about because the board always fought for the rights and interests of landowners. He promised that no decision would be made in favor of the developers because Mr Dakuidreketi was a member of the board.

"You do not have to worry about Mr Dakuidreketi because that is our job to see that he carries out his duties properly. NLTB is always for the landowners and your rights and interests are always our priority," Mr Tabakanalagi said.

The incumbent concerned involves Messr Keni Dakuidreketi, a trained realtor with a business inclination, his latest dealings exposes his tenuous position.
Dakuidreketi founded Fiji's office of Axiom-Rolle-a New Zealand real estate icon eyeing the pristine land in Fiji, in order to further increase their take. Undoubtedly, a universal measure of greed.
Dakudreketi a frequent proxy used by Native Lands Trust Board usually to reinforce their shaky legal position. As well as providing a vehicle to transport the scape goats of shifty land deals.

Vanua Development Corporation Limited - The Board approved the establishment of this investment Company with immediate effect. The Board also approved the appointment of the Directors for the Board:

1. Mr Keni Dakuidreketi, NLTB Board - Chairman
2. Mr Nalin Patel, G Lal & Co - Director
3. Mr Daniel Whippy, Carpenters Fiji Ltd - Director
4. Mr Isoa Kaloumaira, Fijian Trust Fund - Director
5. Mr Kalivati Bakani, NLTB GM - Director

The Company is expected to commence operations from early 2004, following Government's approval of an interest-free loan of $1m to finance the Company. Other current investments of NLTB will be transferred to the Company. Initially the NLTB will be the sole shareholder. It is envisaged that this will be opened up to landowners in future. The primary objective of the Company is to invest in viable, profitable ventures, generating additional revenue for the Board. Over time this may lead to a reduction in poundage increasing distributable funds to landowners.

It is rather disconcerting to find out that professionals in the system abusing their priviledges. It is a matter worth noting that, none of the board of director of this Vanua Corporation are actually native landowners. They are representatives of the investors who have bought off the corrupt executives of N.L.T.B, at the expense of the lowest common denominator in the complex land equation.
The new marina development unfolding at Denarau.

Another development entity that Dakuidreketi has his paws already is the Natadola tourism project. Dakuidreketi is deeply involved with APRIL Development exploits in Fiji. Here is an excerpt of their project description, sourced from Time Share Beat.

FIJI: April Development, a subsidiary of Euro Asia Management Group, is looking to develop a world class integrated resort of over 327 hectares (808 acres) with a variety of recreational and resort options at their Natadola Marine Resort site, a stunning natural bay with white sand beaches on the Coral Coast on the main island of Viti Levu. The resort will include:
Hotels of different class and concept (all ocean front)
18-hole Golf Course
Vacation Ownership Resorts
Second-Home Developments
Multi use Resort Communities
The site is located on the South West Coast of Viti Levu, the main island of Fiji, about 50 km to Nadi International Airport (45 minutes). It's one of those places that when you look at picture of it you just want to be there...

Hiking trails on the Nakauvadra range, Ra.

Although, the issue of creating a minimum wage level in Fiji is a welcomed initiative, it must be understood that without enforcement provisions; this law will be self-defeating. On the other hand, the author of the report has raised a caveat that this new wage level should not be forced upon employers. Narsey further adds that if the employer decides not to implement minimum wage then, it must provide proof and be open for their accounts for auditing.

Two main points of contention by S.i.F.M is that:
1.) What measures are in place to ascertain that employers do not have two or three sets of books?
2.)What is the purpose of a national minimum wage when there are loop holes of enforcement and administration?

Club Em Designs

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