The Labour Party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry, is blaming a gag on the media by the interim government for being unable to convey a Diwali message to Indians in Fiji.
In a statement posted on the Labour Party website, Chaudhry says he was unable to deliver a Diwali message last year as well because "of a hostile and biased print media".
In his Diwali message Chaudhry warns of difficult times ahead with little sign of economic recovery.
"The key sectors of our economy continue to under perform. Further job losses are imminent as businesses initiate cost cutting measures to maintain their bottom lines."
He says it will be years before investor confidence picks up because of Fiji’s reputation as a “coup-centric nation”.
"Against such a backdrop, commonsense dictates that some 80% of our people, men and women with ordinary means, will need to observe strict austerity in their daily lives in order to survive."
"Tragically, more than half of this 80% are those who live in poverty-theirs is even a more daunting challenge. But let not the misfortunes of today, prevent us from hoping for a better future," he said.