The Special Administrator of the Ba Town Council, Arun Prasad has been relieved of his duties, effective immediately.
Last week, Attorney-General and Acting Minister for Local Government, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum intervened on behalf of Fijians living in the Clopcott squatter settlement in Ba, who were victims of Mr Prasad’s aggressive threats to illegally cut off their water and electricity and were not properly consulted regarding resettlement.
In a new revelation, the Attorney-General said, “There is incontestable evidence that has emerged that Mr Prasad obtained waivers and discounts on rates he and his family owed for properties.”
“Mr Prasad has abused his position for personal gain and has often and repeatedly acted in a manner unbecoming of a public officer.”
“These breaches in conduct are in direct contravention to the Bainimarama Government’s commitment to serving the members of the public with the utmost integrity, transparency, and courtesy,” the AG added.
In Ba and Tavua, Mr Prasad will be replaced by Praveen Bala, the Special Administrator of Lautoka, who has recently also acted as the interim Special Administrator of Nadi.
And as the next step in the major reform of local government in the Western Division, Robin Ali, a former CEO of the Nadi Town Council, has been appointed as new Special Administrator in Nadi.
The Attorney General said that the interests of the residents of Ba and Nadi would be much better served with the new appointments.
"Mr Bala, as a previous mayor of Ba Town, is well versed with the needs and challenges of the town. Mr Ali is a former CEO of the Nadi town council and has decades-long proven track record as a local government administrator.”