15 Mar 2006

Moves to regulate private security firms in Fiji

8:21 pm on 15 March 2006

The CEO of Fiji's Justice Ministry, Sakiusa Rabuka, says too little is known about who is behind private security companies being set up and the activities they're engaged in.

His comments support a call by the Asia-Pacific representative of the U.N. working group on mercenaries, Dr Shaista Shameem, that there need to be tighter controls and regulations on the firms.

The presence of former Fiji soldiers on the Papua New Guinea autonomous province of Bougainville, who were allegedly hired by a private security company, has also brought the issue to the fore.

Mr Rabuka says they're aware of the present lack of controls on these organisations.

"When companies, most of these companies are registered, they come in with very innocent looking names and titles. And, it's only when activities do arise like in Bougainville that questions are being raised. Otherwise, most of us in here would not know what these entities are doing."

Mr Rabuka says they are reviewing the Companies Act and a bill has been drafted on the registration of security firms