24 Aug 2005

Fiji senator calls for inquiry into legal system

9:49 am on 24 August 2005

A Fiji senator has called for an inquiry into the country's legal and judicial systems, saying they are a colonial imposition on indigenous Fijians.

Senator Asesela Ravuvu made the call in the Upper House while congratulating the government for introducing the controversial Reconciliation and Unity Bill, which seeks to grant amnesty to coup convicts.

Senator Ravuvu said the Bill is a farsighted move by the present government to resolve political issues and correct the misapplication of justice suffered by the indigenous population.

He said the indigenous people have suffered injustices for a long time under a form of a neo-colonial legal and judicial system imposed on them without their consent.

Senator Ravuvu said the inquiry should investigate the relevance and fairness of the current judicial and legal systems, which do not recognise restorative justice as espoused in the Reconciliation and Unity Bill.