30 Jun 2004

Senior academic says Fiji's Great Council of Chiefs may reduce leadership tenure

2:49 pm on 30 June 2004

The leadership of Fiji's Great Council of Chiefs could revert to back to the traditional one year tenure rather than the current three year term.

Dr Ropate Qalo, the head of the Social and Economic development school at the University of the South Pacific, says the GCC's chairman, Ratu Epeli Ganilau, has been too radical for many chiefs.

He says Ratu Epeli spoke out against the coup on numerous occasions and has pushed continually for reconciliation.

Dr Qalo says many chiefs do not like what they've heard and may want to go back to the chairman holding the position for one year only.

"A significant number of Fijians do not agree with what he's doing. You find that people are uncomfortable that the leader of the Great Council of Chiefs, is doing something that is perhaps ...too new to them, and that kind of transparency is not what they're used to."

Dr Ropate Qalo says it will be up to the Great Council of Chiefs to make the decision on the length of the next chairman's tenure.