27 Jun 2005

Fiji's CCF says political motives can't justify violence on Reconciliation Bill

8:19 pm on 27 June 2005

Fiji's Citizens Constitutional Forum has warned that it will mount a legal challenge to the government's controversial Reconciliation and Unity Bill if it is passed by parliament in its current form.

The CCF has given the warning in its submission on the Bill to parliament's Justice, Law and Order committee.

It says political motives can never justify violence and treason cannot be excused.

The CCF says the Bill sends an anti-democratic message telling the people that the May 2000 coup was OK.

It says the Bill undermines the work of the police, state prosecutors and the courts.

Th CCF says amnesties will set criminals free, and negate all the works required to put them behind bars.

The Bill will set up a Commission to fast track amnesty for coup convicts like George Speight, erase their criminal records, give immunity to those not yet prosecuted and ask the courts to suspend proceedings against those facing charges.