NEWS

Bill 17 Nawaikula’s Consitutional Redress Case Adjourned

Mr Nawaikula claims that their respective rights as landowners of iTaukei lands were breached when they were not consulted by the Government and the iTLTB before Bill 17 was put before Parliament and later passed as law for Fiji.
01 Oct 2021 11:45
Bill 17 Nawaikula’s Consitutional Redress Case Adjourned
SODELPA Member of Parliament Niko Nawaikula entering the High Court on September 30, 2021. Photo: Ronald Kumar

SODELPA Member of Parliament, Niko Nawaikula, has filed a constitutional redress proceeding in the High Court of Fiji regarding the recent amendment law passed in Parliament regarding Bill 17.

The matter was called at the Civil High Court in Suva yesterday before the Chief Justice, Kamal Kumar.

The defendants in the proceeding are the Government, the Attorney-General and the iTaukei Lands Trust Board (iTLTB).

Mr Nawaikula is suing the defendants in a representative capacity, on behalf of members of his mataqali as owners of iTaukei lands.

Mr Nawaikula claims that their respective rights as landowners of iTaukei lands were breached when they were not consulted by the Government and the iTLTB before Bill 17 was put before Parliament and later passed as law for Fiji.

He also claims that provisions of the 2013 Constitution, the iTaukei Lands Trust Act 1940, and the International Labour Organisation Convention No. 169 (“ILOC 169”) were breached. Fiji ratified the ILOC 169 on March 3, 1989.

He is seeking a declaration that the Act and Bill 17 to be invalid and that it was unlawful, unconstitutional and a breach of landowners’ constitutional rights.

Mr Nawaikula’s lawyer Sevuloni Valenitabua told the court that the summons were served to all parties along with a notice of motion and an affidavit of Mr Nawaikula and of Lynda Tabuya as a supporting affidavit.

Counsels David Solvalu and Nazia Ali from the Attorney-General’s office sought time to file their response and time to consider a strike out application to be filed.

Counsel from the iTLTB Iva Suveinakama opposed the application filed by Mr Nawaikula and sought time to file their response.

Chief Justice Kumar has ordered both defendant counsels to file and serve their response by October 28 while Mr Valenitabua has been given time until November 11 to file and serve his reply.

The matter will be called for mention on November 16.

Feedbackashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj

 

 



Fijisun Ad Space


Get updates from the Fiji Sun, handpicked and delivered to your inbox.


By entering your email address you're giving us permission to send you news and offers. You can opt-out at any time.


Fiji Sun Instagram
Subscribe-to-Newspaper