29 Sep 2008

Fiji Law Society President explains about face on interim regime

8:44 pm on 29 September 2008

The newly elected president of the Fiji Law Society, Dorsami Naidu, says the society is now prepared to engage with the interim Government of Frank Bainimarama.

Mr Naidu says the society's previous policy of refusing to participate in the Judicial and Legal Service Commission - which appoints judges, magistrates and other officers of the court - had been counter-productive.

"I think we've realised that not only has the standard of justice in the country but we as lawyers have suffered and I think because it's still under the old constitution I think we will be participating in that because we appear before these judicial officers in the court, so we must also have a say in who is appointed."

Mr Naidu, who was elected last week, says the society is also likely to review its previous policy of not recognising lawyers appointed to judicial positions by the Interim Government.

He says the new policy of engagement should not be seen as the society recognising the legitimacy of the Interim Government and that it will continue to be highly critical of the regime.