13 Apr 2005

Fiji law reform commission may look at anti-gay law

3:43 pm on 13 April 2005

Fiji's Law Reform Commission says it could take up to a year to complete a review, which may recommend scrapping colonial-era laws on homosexuality.

The Commission has put back the start date of the Penal Code review to the middle of next month and the chairman, Alipate Qetaki, says it could take up to a year to complete.

Mr Qetaki says he'll look at Articles 175 and 177 on indecent practices and unnatural offences, but he says homosexuality offences aren't the focus.

Mr Qetaki says the aim is rather carrying the Cabinet's wishes which means to overhaul the whole system.

"This has been recognised by the government and by the major stakeholders including the courts, including the director of public prosecutions, the police and the ministry and justice, and the attorney-general, this is why we are carrying out a holistic review of our penal code."

Alipate Qetaki