|I'm out of my depth...|
Since Fiji's 2006 military coup, NZ sanctions have prevented military and regime officials from entering our country. This ban has stopped some members of the Fiji rugby side coming here, and last year coup leader Frank Bainimarama said he wanted to lead his country to the Rugby World Cup.
Earlier this week Muddling McCully said NZ would be prepared to relax its sanctions (!!) if Fiji gave "a pretty clear indication they're headed for the polls within an acceptable time frame". He reckons the *yawn* Rugby World Cup may provide the right motivation. "The NZ govt has never wanted to exclude Fijian people coming to the Rugby World Cup, but the sad fact is members of their administration and military are on the banned list."
Ok, Muzz, but think about this. We go soft on sanctions because Frank promises an election soon. Happy little Fijians troop in for the rugby. Then ol' Frank says "Elections? Yea...naaaaaarrrrrrrrrr!" After all, he promised to hold 'em in 2009 but reneged. There's also concern that the ones promised for 2014 won't be fair and open, coz Frankie's said no party or individual associated with the guys he overthrew will be allowed to seek office!
Fiji has faced diplomatic pressure since the coup, suspension from the Commonwealth and the Pacific Islands Forum, and sanctions... but nothing has changed! So why does McCully think a bloody rugby tournament will make any difference? Aaaahhhhh, because McCully, wearing a different hat, wants bums on seats!
Maybe Muddling McCully should re-read his job description: no, not the bit about being Minister for Sport and Recreation, nor the part about being Minister for the Rugby World Cup. Forget those conflicts of interest for a moment. Please refresh your memory on 'How To Be A Foreign Minister 101'...
PS: 09 Nov.2011 - Just as I predicted, a Fijian rugby player/soldier, who resigned from the army to play in the RWC...is now back in the Fijian Army!!! And McCully is puzzled, saying: "But...but...we had a diplomatic agreement!" Muzz, you are such a gormless pillick!