6 Feb 2008

Fiji opposition parties still divided over engaging with interim govt

9:41 pm on 6 February 2008

Fiji opposition parties remain divided on the best way to engage the Interim Government in dialogue on the return to democracy.

Pre-coup opposition leader Mick Beddoes has called on other opposition parties to join him in joining the Government's National Council to Build a Better Fiji.

The council's main function is to develop a new People's Charter which critics argue is an attempt to replace the existing consitution..

Mr Beddoes says he only joined the council after it agreed to place the future role of the military on the agenda.

"By joining, I'm now in the same room as the members of the interim administration including the prime minister and it's a situation that has not been able to occur for the last 13 months."

But deposed prime minister Laisenia Qarase says the charter is illegal, the majority of Fijians are opposed to it and his party will not be joining the council.