Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Commonwealth Regrets Rejection of Draft Constitution as Fiji Dictator Heads to UN

Radio NZ International news

The Commonwealth Secretary-General Kamalesh Sharma (left picture) has expressed regret about the Fiji interim government’s decision to reject the draft constitution.

The regime dumped the draft produced by Professor Yash Ghai’s Constitution Commission last week and gave its legal team until the end of the month to produce a new one.

Kamalesh Sharma says to be legitimate and enduring for future generations, the constitution of Fiji needs to be a product of reflection and input by the people for the people of Fiji. He says the decision by the interim government to set aside the text painstakingly prepared by the Commission through widespread public consultation is regrettable.

Mr Sharma says the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group, at its last meeting in last September, welcomed the broad-based national dialogue on Fiji’s future. He added the inclusive national constitutional consultation process that has been completed needs to be reflected fully in the new constitution.

The Secretary-General says the Commonwealth remains committed to the restoration of civilian and constitutional democracy, the rule of law and human rights in Fiji. He says the Commonwealth remains open and willing to support the Government of Fiji towards these ends.




Explanatory Report                                 Appendages to Draft Fiji Constitution


Dictator Bainimarama at UN to accept Chairmanship of G77 and China

Fiji’s interim prime minister is at the United Nations to accept the Chairmanship of the Group of 77 plus China on behalf of the Fiji government. The Ministry of Information says the handover ceremony, later this morning, is where Commodore Frank Bainimarama will give an address formally accepting the chairmanship.

Fiji was elected in September 2012 to Chair the Group of 77 and China for the duration of this year. The G77 is the largest voting bloc at the United Nations, and consists of more than 130 developing countries from around the world.


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