21 Jan 2004

Fiji Labour Party could be prosecuted over controversial election leaflet

4:39 pm on 21 January 2004

The Fiji Labour Party is facing strong condemnation for what the Government says are insensitive comments bordering on hate speech.

Fiji TV reports that a Hindi language campaign pamphlet distributed by Labour during last week's Tavua Open by-election described the Government and the indigenous people as having "devil powers."

The Information Minister Simione Kaitani says the comment is insulting and incites racial hatred.

Mr Kaitani says he is seeking legal advice on whether Labour should be prosecuted under the Public Order Act.

The National Federation Party says the Labour pamphlet incites racial and religious intolerance and is a classic example of hate speech.

The NFP's general secretary, Pramod Rae, says the Labour Party should be held accountable under the law for creating mistrust between the communities.