Khaiyum has called on people to “dig deep into their pockets” to assist in the cyclone relief effort (FT online 9/3)
Sounds somewhat hypocritical coming from a person who himself has not contributed a cent!
PM Bainimarama, Khaiyum and several other FF Ministers have unashamedly gone around distributing rations donated by CJ Patel and others, as their government’s contribution. With salaries of $300,000 plus they have not put in a cent to the relief effort. Yet, they have the gall to put pressure on others to assist.
He has imparted a veiled warning to the Hoteliers to give more saying that some small businesses have contributed more to the PM’s fund. This is simply a refined form of extortion. People should not be pressured to contribute – it should come freely from the goodness of their hearts.
He is also putting pressure on the Banks to announce the details of their unsecured loans offer to cyclone victims. He himself had announced soon after Cyclone Winston that Banks could be lending up to $5000 without security. There was no confirmation from the Banks that they would do so.
Now he is putting pressure on the Banks in the intimidating manner.
Many good souls have provided personal assistance to victims of Winston because they do not wish to make a donation through the government. There is a complete lack of transparency and accountability in the disbursement of relief by government. Who can know whether the donated funds/supplies will go to the actual victims?
To date, government has not published a full list of donations in cash or kind received from the public. This list should be in the public domain and should be updated on a regular basis, in the interest of transparency.