28 Aug 2007

Fiji's President, vice president and interim PM lose membership of GCC

7:03 am on 28 August 2007

Fiji's president, vice president and interim prime minister have lost their ex-officio membership of the Great Council of Chiefs.

Fiji TV reports that this is part of the changes now being made to pave the way for a reconstituted Great Council following the sacking of its members in April.

President Iloilo has promulgated a decree in the government gazette detailing the changes which will see the membership of the Great Council being reduced from 55 to 52.

The 42 members representing the 14 indigenous provinces will remain but there is will 6 co-opted members who will play an advisory or consultative role in the Great Council.

The provision for life membership has been removed resulting in the only life member of the Great Council, Sitiveni Rabuka, losing his position.

New criteria for the selection of members of the Great Council will be drawn up soon.

Meanwhile the 6 former members of the Great Council of Chiefs who have been appointed to review the body are carrying on their work despite threats of legal action and are expected to finish it by the end of next month.