‘Rethink modus operandi’

Nilesh Lal - Dialogue Fiji. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA

THE FijiFirst party’s victory by a slim margin in the 2018 General Election will require them to rethink their modus operandi, says Dialogue Fiji.

Executive director Nilesh Lal said there were both advantages and disadvantages of having an “almost” hung Parliament.

“The main advantage is that the ruling party will be forced to consult opposition parties and build consensus before introducing legislative matters in Parliament,” he said.

“Moreover, it also ensures that there is good attendance in Parliament as both sides ensure they have maximum numbers in the house every sitting to avoid any surprises.”

Mr Lal said the main disadvantage was that the razor-thin majority could hamper the passage of critical legislation, and seriously impede the ability of Government to implement cohesive policies in a timely manner.

He said the bare majority also meant that Government could continually be at threat of collapse through loss of confidence or loss of supply and this could affect stability and economic development prospects. “Given the election results, a coalition government is an available option to mitigate the disadvantages of an “almost” hung Parliament.

“In fact, it remains the best option at this stage.

“If that might be something the main party is unwilling to consider, a conciliatory and consensus-based approach is critically required in the best interests of the country.”

The FijiFirst party narrowly won the 2018 General Election, raking in 227,241 votes or 50.02 per cent, followed by the Social Democratic Liberal Party in second place with 181,072 votes or 39.85 per cent and the National Federation Party finished in third place with 33,515 or 7.38 per cent.

More Stories