29 Apr 2008

Fiji interim PM appeals to critics for co-operation

8:53 pm on 29 April 2008

Fiji's interim Prime Minister has appealed to critics of his administration for cooperation with what he says is a renewed sense of urgency.

In a statement released from Singapore, where he is on a fact finding mission, he said those opposed to the current regime should stop deluding themselves that the country will return to pre-December 2006 status.

He said at that time there was repugnant racial discrimination and an alarmingly high level of official corruption

This statement was released as the interim administration failed to convene a political forum by the end of this month, through the Office of the President.

The administration had wanted a widely representative gathering to discuss constitutional changes that would normally be made by parliament

Our correspondent in Suva, Matelita Rogogo says the attempts to set up a forum are motivated by the administration's desire to see the next elections held under a new electoral system

"If the forum is as representative as they hope then it could probably act as a de facto parliament, where becuase of the agreement and because it has been convened by the office of the President, they can make some changes to the electoral act."

But our correspondent says a number of those who might take part have indicated they would only be involved in an independent forum, not one set up by the interim administration .