|Beddoes urging UPP supporters to join SDL, FLP of NFP.|
The regime's latest decree has forced another political party to wind up.
The United Peoples Party's national executive committee announced a short time ago via a statement it has shut down the organisation as required by the political decree.
SDL, the last party elected as government, resolved last week to wind up, settling on Social Democractic Liberal Party as its new name.
The UPP statement says the party will not be re-established, but as part of its strategy of continued political representation for its members and supporters, the NEC is urging supporters and members to join one of the three other main political parties, namely the SDL, FLP or NFP as direct individual financial members.
The NEC says the move will be in keeping with the UPP’s core beliefs in promoting ‘multiracial politics’ in Fiji, a position they refused to compromise on following the 1987 coup and the end of the Alliance Party. It is a belief that has kept them together to the present day.
The statement, in part, is as follows:
By joining the other parties as direct members, the NEC said former UPP supporters will effectively help to alter the ‘DNA’ of these parties ethnic mix through a more natural process that in time would hopefully yield a more ‘multiracial’ structured political entity, which in turn would encourage a meaningful shift in policies and objectives to properly reflect its increasing multiracial membership.
Party President Mick Beddoes said he and the members of the NEC were truly grateful and appreciative of the loyalty and dedication of the members and supporters of the party over the many years.
In particular Beddoes said, he was humbled and thankful to his constituents for their confidence in him by electing him twice to Parliament in 2001 & 2006 and he hoped that his performance on their behalf was worthy of their support.
The NEC statement said that although the UPP was by comparison a small political party, its contribution in terms of Fiji’s national politics was equal to that of the major parties.
Since the post Alliance days the UPP and its members have stayed solidly behind the rule of law, working with other organizations to oppose the perpetrators of coups in Fiji as a means of altering our political direction.
This commitment and determination to stay on the side of the law and to do what is right and speak out without fear on matters of importance to the people and Fiji was appropriately reflected in the several Tebbutt Times leadership Polls published from 2003 to 2006 showing the UPP enjoying broad appeal from all segments and communities in Fiji of between 52% and 64%, which was considered to be ‘unique’.
The NEC said that the minority community as 5th & 6th generation descendants of the first settlers to Fiji that comprises more than 10 different ethnic communities will always have an important role to play in fostering improved relations among all of the people of Fiji and although the challenge ahead of us may seem insurmountable at times, we need only reflect on the risks and challenges that our forefathers faced as they journeyed to the unknown islands of Fiji in order to establish a place that we now all call home.
As their descendants, we must understand that our struggle for a free, fair, just, transparent and accountable democratically elected government can only come from the free will of the people and not from the barrel of a gun or the ongoing oppression of the people and no matter which party we individually or collectively join in the coming days and weeks, we must stay true to our core beliefs and do whatever we must to ensure that we put in place a system that allows us to freely and fairly, without fear or favor, elect a government of the people, for the people and by the people.
We must accept nothing less!
Authorized By: Mick Beddoes President
Margret Rounds Vice President & Acting General Secretary
Mike Campbell Seraphina Mock George Hicks (NEC members)