The split in government’s largest opposition – the SODELPA Party has widened so much that it could lose vital support from those whose votes will make a difference at the next election.

The public display of disunity revealed a level of chaos that calls into question whether SODELPA is best placed as the alternative choice for undecided voters.

SODELPA – the party
founded by the late Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase held to ransom by the tug of
war – many say are part and parcel of any democratically run party.

The Vijay Singh led faction which met at the Holiday Inn has decided to re-advertise the position of party leader.

“Well it’s no secret that there have been tensions and differences in
the party, the court case itself brought out a situation. Nevertheless we had
not expected that there would be another faction meeting in town. I would like
to stress that the management board today emphasized that this meeting held at
Holiday Inn was the constitutional meeting of SODELPA acoording to the SODELPA
Constitution, said newly appointed Acting General Secretary of the party Emele
Duituturaga.

Although he wants to
mediate between the two factions, he says the supervisor of elections
understands that Adi Litia is still the registered officer of the party.

The Holiday Inn faction
feels it’s time the party rebrands and give SODELPA a better look.

While some like to say that
they have been in the party longer than he, it is not amiss on anyone that he
won majority of the party votes in the last election totalling 77,040, that’s a
little over 60 thousand votes more than second place Lynda Tabuya who secured
8795 votes.

Meanwhile, Duituturaga
says there is a need to rebrand the party with a constitutional review planned.

“That we have a number of
versions of the constitution and to consolidate, so they’ll be a constitutional
review committee. We also talked about our preparations for the 2022 elections that’s
only some 27 – 30 months away and of course what triggers our preparation is the
selection of the party leader. The party leader from the last election was the
Hon Sitiveni Rabuka and that position normally automatically vacates when the
party does not win an election however we have maintained Hon Rabuka but there
will be a substantive appointment in the next few months.”

As in the words of author Christopher Gilbert, “Wherever it takes disaster to unite, politics generally divide: and in eras of intense uncertainty, a nation’s people retreat into the tribes in which they feel the most secure.”

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