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Tupou Draunidalo

National Federation Party Pio Tikoduadua Parmod Chand

Tupou Draunidalo
Tupou Draunidalo March 2015.jpg
Tupou Draunidalo in 2015
Member of the Parliament of Fiji
In office
17 September 2014 (2014-09-17) – January 2017 (2017-01)
Succeeded byParmod Chand
President of the National Federation Party
In office
March 2014 (2014-03) – January 2017 (2017-01)
Succeeded byPio Tikoduadua
Personal details
Born
Tupou Takaiwai Senirewa Draunidalo
NationalityFijian
Political partyHOPE Party
Other political
affiliations
RelationsTimoci Bavadra (stepfather)
ParentsKuini Speed (mother)
Savenaca Draunidalo (father)
Education
Alma materUniversity of the South Pacific
Australian National University
OccupationLawyer, politician

Roko Tupou Takaiwai Senirewa Draunidalo is a Fijian lawyer and politician. She is a former member of the Parliament of Fiji and president of the HOPE political party established in July 2018.

Background

Draunidalo is the daughter of former Fiji Deputy Prime Minister Adi Kuini Speed, a Paramount Chief from Nadroga-Navosa, who was deposed in the 2000 Fijian coup d'état, and her first husband, Savenaca Draunidalo, who served in the cabinet of Laisenia Qarase, which was deposed in the 2006 Fijian coup d'état. Her stepfather, Timoci Bavadra was briefly Prime Minister of Fiji in 1987, before being ousted in the 1987 military coup by Sitiveni Rabuka.

Draunidalo was educated at Draiba, Veiuto Primary, Suva Grammar, Canberra Girls' Grammar School, the University of the South Pacific and the Australian National University. She stood as a candidate for the Fijian Association Party (FAP) in the 2001 election, contesting the Laucala Open Constituency, but polled only 248 votes out of more than 11,500 votes cast.

On 9 September 2006, she was elected Vice-President of the Fiji Law Society, defeating Rajesh Gordon.

Opposition to 2006 coup

Draunidalo condemned the military coup that took place on 5 December 2006, and threatened a possible court challenge to the legitimacy of the interim Cabinet sworn in on 8–9 January 2007. [1][dead link]

On 30 January 2007 Draunidalo was arrested by soldiers along with Pacific Centre for Public Integrity Director Angie Heffernan and questioned on charges of sedition.[1][2] In June 2007 she was prevented from leaving Fiji to attend an international conference after being mistakenly included on an immigration blacklist.[3][4] In July 2007 she was charged with contempt of court after stating in an interview with ABC[which?] that Fijian lawyers had lost faith in the judiciary.[5] The case was subsequently withdrawn, but the High Court criticised Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum for bringing it and awarded costs against him.[6]

Draunidalo represented lawyers including the president of the Fiji Law Society Mr. Dorsami Naidu in various litigation after the 2006 coup, she also represented an NGO in an application at the eleventh hour to join the constitutional litigation going to the validity of the 1997 constitution between the elected prime minister and the usurping military commander.

The substantive matter upheld the validity of the constitution and the arguments of Draunidalo’s NGO client led by a Sydney silk[clarification needed] was largely adopted by the court.

In 2012, Draunidalo represented former Fijian Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase in his corruption trial.[7]

National Federation Party

In March 2014 Draunidalo was elected as president of the National Federation Party.[8] She competed in the 2014 election, winning 2,966 votes[9] and becoming one of eight women to enter parliament.[10]

In June 2016, she made remarks against the Fijian Minister for Education, Mahendra Reddy asking him if he thought the opposition side were "dumb natives" for which she was taken to the government controlled (numbers) Privileges Committee who recommended that she was suspended from parliament for the remainder of the term of Parliament which ends in 2018.[11] In January 2017 she resigned from the NFP and from parliament to avoid working with Sitiveni Rabuka who had resumed leadership of the main opposition party. Her seat was taken by Parmod Chand,[12] and she was succeded in the presidency by Pio Tikoduadua.[13]

HOPE Party

In 2018 Draunidalo formed the HOPE Party, becoming its leader.[14] The party was registered in July 2018,[15] with Draunidalo leading it into the 2018 elections.

Although the three month old party did not win parliamentary seats, the Fiji government has adopted many of their policy recommendations with regard to the rule of law, governance, better relations with businesses and private investors, the environment and the economy (emphasis on agriculture and tourism).

Draunidalo has also said that foreign governments have adopted some of their policy ideas and recommendations in their dealings with the Fijian government, in particular with regard to governance in particular the lessening of Fiji government peacekeeping costs and improvement of training and resources for the military with emphasis on the navy, engineering and disaster response services.

References

  1. ^ "Fiji soldiers seize coup critic Heffernan". Radio New Zealand International. 2007-01-30. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  2. ^ "Fiji coup leader says restoring democracy will take time". ABC. 2007-01-30. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  3. ^ "Fiji Law Society VP stopped from leaving the country". Radio New Zealand International. 2007-06-04. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  4. ^ Robert Matau (2007-06-04). "Lawyer's travel ban a blacklist 'mix-up'". Fiji Times. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  5. ^ "Fiji Law Society vice president faces contempt charge". Radio New Zealand International. 2007-07-12. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  6. ^ "Fiji AG castigated by High Court judge in ruling". Radio New Zealand International. 2007-11-20. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  7. ^ "Qarase lawyer claims no case in Fiji corruption prosecution". Radio New Zealand International. 2012-07-17. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  8. ^ Nasik Swami (2014-04-01). "NFP elects Draunidalo". Fiji Times. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  9. ^ "2014 Election Results". Fiji Elections Office. Archived from the original on 2014-09-21. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  10. ^ "Fiji election boosts region's women representation". Radio New Zealand International. 2014-09-23. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  11. ^ "Draunidalo suspended, opposition walks out". Newswire. Retrieved 2016-06-04. of the term of Parliament
  12. ^ "Fiji's Draunidalo quits parliament and party". RNZ. 23 January 2017. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
  13. ^ Mala Lautoka, Shahani (4 June 2017). "Tikoduadua: I Am Honoured". Fiji Sun. Retrieved 2020-09-04.
  14. ^ Selita Bolanavanua (5 March 2017). "Draunidalo To Lead Proposed Party". Fiji Sun. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
  15. ^ "'HOPE' Has Been Registered As Fiji's Latest Political Party". Fiji Sun. 27 July 2018. Retrieved 16 October 2018.