FijiFirst

FijiFirst (Fijian: iMatai ni Viti) is a liberal political party in Fiji. The party was formed in March 2014 by then Prime Minister, Frank Bainimarama.

FijiFirst
LeaderFrank Bainimarama
PresidentTema Varo[1]
Secretary-GeneralAiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum
Founded31 March 2014
Registered30 May 2014
Headquarters96 Brown Street, Suva
Ideology
Political positionCentre
Colours  Light blue
SloganThe best future for all Fijians
Parliament of Fiji
26 / 55
Website
fijifirst.com

Formation

The party was launched on 31 March 2014 with Bainimarama beginning a nationwide tour of the country in a campaign bus to collect the obligatory 5000 signatures necessary to register a political party.[4] The party collected over 40,000 signatures for its registration.[5]

Bainimarama says FijiFirst is a name that encompasses his political beliefs.[6] He listed his first candidate and party president Jiko Luveni.[7]

The party appointed former Fiji Labour Party senator Bijai Prasad as one of its Vice Presidents as well as the current Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum as the party General secretary. Bijai Prasad resigned as VP a day later citing a criminal conviction for larceny in the 1980s for which he had served jail time.[8] The Tui Macuata, Ratu Wiliame Katonivere was also selected as a vice president of the party. Vimlesh Kumar who is an accountant and an affiliate member of CPA Australia is listed as the treasurer.[9]

The party's application for registration resulted in six complaints,[10] including one claiming that "Fiji 1st" was previously used by another party.[11] Despite this, the party was registered on 30 May 2014.[12]

2014 election

The party released its first batch of 21 candidates on July 25, 2014[13] with Frank Bainimarama heading the list. As a result of the 2014 Fijian general elections, the party won 293,714 votes, 59.2% of all those who voted (495,105 voters), giving the party a clear majority with 32 of the 50 Parliamentary seats.[14]

2018 election

The party ran 51 candidates in the 2018 elections, ten of which were women.[15] FijiFirst won the 2018 general elections with a reduced majority from the 2014 elections. FijiFirst accumulated 227,241 of the votes that resulted on the party gaining 50.02% that allocated to 27 seats enough for the party to govern alone within a slim majority.[16][17]

2022 election

Despite remaining the first party in the 2022 election FijiFirst saw its vote share reducing again down to 42.55%, causing the party to lose its majority in the Parliament.[18] With only 3 seats the SODELPA emerged as kingmaker,[19] and after 6 days of negotiations it decided to support a PAP-led cabinet, effectively ending FijiFirst's eight-year tenure and Bainimarama's 16-year premiership.[20]

Electoral history

Parliamentary elections

Election Party leader Votes % Seats +/– Position Government
2014 Frank Bainimarama 293,714 59.17%
32 / 50
New 1st Government
2018 227,241 52.94%
27 / 51
5 1st Government
2022 200,246 42.55%
26 / 55
1 1st Opposition

References

  1. N, Edwin; FBCNews. "FijiFirst appoints new party President". Fiji Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 2021-11-21.
  2. Ratuva, Steven; Lawson, Stephanie, eds. (2016). The People Have Spoken: The 2014 Elections in Fiji. ANU Press. p. 149. ISBN 9781760460020.
  3. "Fiji to stay secular state: Bainimarama".
  4. "'I want a new Fiji' - Fiji Times Online". Archived from the original on 2014-04-09. Retrieved 2014-04-26.
  5. "Fiji's Bainimarama lodges party application - Radio New Zealand News". 5 May 2014. Retrieved 2014-05-08.
  6. "Pacific.scoop.co.nz » Fiji First unveiled as Bainimarama's new party name for elections". Retrieved 2014-04-26.
  7. "Fiji First registration now weeks away - Radio New Zealand News". 25 April 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-26.
  8. "FijiFirst man quits over criminal record". Archived from the original on 2014-05-08. Retrieved 2014-05-08.
  9. "I did not have to think twice - Tui Macuata". Retrieved 2014-05-08.
  10. "Fiji First Party approval outlined". Radio New Zealand International. 2014-06-02. Retrieved 2014-06-03.
  11. "Fiji First party registration decried". Radio New Zealand International. 2014-05-31. Retrieved 2014-06-03.
  12. "Fijian PM's Fiji First party officially registered". Shanghai Daily. 2014-05-30. Retrieved 2014-06-03.
  13. Swamy, Nasik. "FijiFirst candidates". Fiji Times. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 26 July 2014.
  14. "2014 Election Results". Fiji Elections Office. Archived from the original on 2014-09-21. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
  15. "Six political parties to contest Fijian elections". RNZ. 16 October 2018. Retrieved 16 October 2018.
  16. "2018 General Election: FijiFirst wins and will form next government". The Fiji Times. 18 November 2018. Retrieved 18 November 2018.
  17. Talebula Kate (18 November 2018). "2018 General Election: FijiFirst secures 27 seats to form government". Fiji Times. Retrieved 18 November 2018.
  18. Fijivillage. "Final results out with no party securing more than 50 percent of the total votes in the 2022 general elections". www.fijivillage.com. Retrieved 2022-12-18.
  19. "SODELPA is kingmaker". Fiji Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 2022-12-18.
  20. "Fiji has a new coalition government; Rabuka to be PM". RNZ. 2022-12-20. Retrieved 2022-12-20.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.