NATION

Fiji Law Society Raises Concern For TC Yasa Appeal Permit

This threat only sows fear and confusion and potentially deprives those in need of the support they require.
24 Dec 2020 09:21
Fiji Law Society Raises Concern For TC Yasa Appeal Permit

The Fiji Law Society is concerned about the statement by the National Disaster Management Office that permits must be sought from the Government to fundraise for TC Yasa.

Regulation 3(g) of the Natural Disaster (Tropical Cyclone Y asa) Regulations 2020 says:

… any officer of the Fiji Police Force and the Republic of Fiji Military

Forces performing a role or discharging a responsibility in accordance

with the (Natural Disaster Management) Act, may do all or any of the

following:

(g) prohibiting the unjustified exploitation of a disaster for profit.

This law does not stop anyone from asking others for money to support disaster affected people. There is no law that says a person must have a permit before asking others for money to help disaster affected people.

Existing criminal law already provides adequate sanction against anyone who pretends to be fund-raising but intends to keep for himself or herself the money collected.

It also runs counter to common sense for the NDMO to be suggesting, at a time of natural disaster and great suffering, that the many religious and community organisations, charities and individuals who are trying to help those affected appear to b e threatened with prosecution if they do not seek a permit to ask for support.

This threat only sows fear and confusion and potentially deprives those in need of the support they require.

The Fiji Law Society urges the NDMO to clarify that no one is required to obtain a permit to fund raise for disaster affected people, withdraw the threat of prosecution and encourage all good Samaritans to provide what support they are able to give, collectively or individually.

Feedback: rosi.doviverata@fijisun.com.fj



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