A representative of a political party convicted of making a false statement was sentenced to 11 months imprisonment in the Suva Magistrates Court today.
Mr Jale Baba was charged by the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC) under the Political Parties (Registration, Conduct, Funding and Disclosures) Act of 2013 after he was found to have published falsified Voter Lists and other false information related to the Voter Lists on Facebook between August and October 2018.
He had initially denied the charge but pleaded guilty to the charge in November 2019.
In delivering the Sentence, Chief Magistrate Mr Usaia Ratuvili said that whether intended or not, Mr Baba’s post had a global reach through his followers and would have the effect of undermining confidence in the Fiji Elections Office and cast doubt on the General Elections in 2018.
The Chief Magistrate further ruled that a request from Defence to not enter a conviction against Mr Baba was denied and that the conviction will stand.
It was also emphasized that the above offence was rarely prosecuted and there was no set tariff available in sentencing.
The sentence of 11 months imposed on Mr Baba will be suspended for three (3) years.