6 Oct 2004

Fiji's opposition leader supports reconciliation week

4:20 pm on 6 October 2004

Fiji's opposition leader, Mick Beddoes, says the Labour party should end what he calls its confrontational stance over the national week of reconciliation.

The call came after the Labour party announced it was boycotting the ceremonies because it believed there could be no reconciliation over the 2000 coup until justice had been done.

Mr Beddoes says he accepts that Labour were dumped from power during the coup and suffered but it's time to move forward.

And, he says the boycott is unhelpful.

"We need to accept, and I think this is the one part the Labour party does not accept, that the polarisation of our races, is a consequence of the type of action that each of the groups are taking and all they're succeeding in doing is polarising their groups further. And, of course, there's a political advantage for them in doing that, most definitely. But, that's not what the country needs."

Mr Beddoes says, unlike the party, Fiji-Indians around the country HAVE been participating in the reconciliation ceremonies.