18 Mar 2004

Speaker at indigenous leaders meeting in Suva says western democracy is falling apart

10:36 am on 18 March 2004

Western style democracy has come under attack at a meeting of indigenous leaders from 15 Pacific Island countries.

The meeting in Fiji has been told that in Melanesia, western democracy has outlived its expectations and is falling apart.

The comment has come from the director of the Suva-based Pacific Concerns Resource Centre, Hilda Lini.

Ms Lini says western style democracy is outdated and has created more chaos and poverty against the Melanesian spirit of caring and sharing.

She is pushing for a new model of democracy based on indigenopus and modern values.

Ms Lini says the collective rights of Pacific peoples that have sustained peaceful communities for centuries are not adequately legalised in national constitutions.

She says constitutions and international human rights place more emphasis on individual rights and freedoms.