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Fiji Time: 8:36 AM on Friday 25 April

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Forbidden donations

Dawn Gibson
Thursday, February 13, 2014

COMPANIES and corporate entities are not allowed to donate money directly to political parties.

This was reiterated this week by Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum who said political parties needed to adhere to the law on this point.

"The law is quite clear and it is done for a specific reason.

"The law states that a company or corporate entity cannot donate money directly to a political party," Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said.

"It also states that any person or individual that does donate to a political party can donate a maximum of only $10,000 annually."

He said foreign entities were also not allowed to donate money to political parties and it was done this way in a number of countries around the world for the sake of transparency and fairness.

"There's a reason for that — to keep a level of transparency, to make sure that we don't have political campaigns being run by big businesses.

"It is also to ensure that small political parties have the ability to also campaign on equal footing.

"Their ability to campaign on policies and issues will in fact be watered down simply because they don't have access to funds.

"Of course some countries have a rule in place where the actual Parliament gives money to political parties, but that's something for the new Parliament to decide."