FIJI NEWS

Carr backs change to Ghai draft

By JYOTI PRATIBHA Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr yesterday said he understood why the controversial Yash Ghai draft constitution had to be modified. In statements which boost the Bainimarama Government’s
15 Jan 2013 09:20

By JYOTI PRATIBHA

Australian Foreign Minister Bob Carr yesterday said he understood why the controversial Yash Ghai draft constitution had to be modified.
In statements which boost the Bainimarama Government’s efforts to bring true democracy for all Fijians, Mr Carr told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation/Radio Australia:
“The notion for example of a largely unelected national people’s assembly comprised principally of non-government organisations sitting alongside the parliament is something I can’t think of enjoying a precedence anywhere else in the constitution of a democratic country.”

RACE

Mr Carr also acknowledged that the Bainimarama Government is working to move Fiji away from the politics of race, hence the dissolving of Bose Levu Vakaturaga, or Great Council of Chiefs.
Mr Carr said: “The recreation of an unelected great council of chiefs would seem to give rise to the suggestion that ethnic divisions in the country were going to be exaggerated by, and entrenched by, new constitutional arrangements.”
The creation of the National People’s Assembly and a new role for the dissolved Bose Levu Vakaturaga were amongst recommendations by Kenyan academic Professor Ghai and his commission.
Mr Carr found it understandable that the Bainimarama Government objected to both these features of the draft constitution Professor Ghai presented to it.

QUESTIONED

Provisions in the Ghai draft were questioned by President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau when he asked Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama to institute moves to modify the draft
Commodore Bainimarama said before the draft goes to the Constituent Assembly, Government legal experts would modify it and align it with the strongly supported People’s Charter.
The Constituent Assembly is expected to meet next month to publicly debate and consult on the draft. It will then finalise a constitution to take Fiji to general elections next year.
Mr Carr accepted that the Fijian Government wanted to move beyond the racial divide.
He said: “They want Fiji to move beyond the racial divisions that have held the country back in the past and that is something we would welcome. I think it is something the people of Fiji would welcome.”
Mr Carr had met his Fijian counterpart Ratu Inoke Kubuabola in Australia last week.
Commodore Bainimarama has stressed for Fiji to have true democracy, creating a Fiji for all Fijians, it needs to move from old ways and old politics.




Fijisun E-edition
Tanoa Waterfront Lautoka Fiji
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
error: