11 Jan 2012

Fiji Labour Party shocked at new Public Order decree

7:54 am on 11 January 2012

The Fiji Labour Party says the Public Emergency Regulations have been replaced by a decree which is shocking and more repressive and draconian than the Regulations just lifted.

The amended Public Order Decree 2012 came into force last Friday - a day before the Public Emergency Regulations were lifted.

The Act stipulates that no one can legally challenge actions taken by the Prime Minister or senior police officers under the Act.

The Labour Party has described it as a clearly negative development which is hardly likely to provide the open and free environment necessary for proper political dialogue to take place to return Fiji to democracy and constitutional rule.

It says most observers see the move as a farce rather than any genuine attempt to restore to the people of Fiji the fundamental freedoms and human rights they had lost.

The Labour Party says the so-called modernised Public Order Decree appears to be much more sinister in style, intent and purpose than the Public Order Act of 1969.

It says it is draconian in that the courts no longer have jurisdiction to deal with any challenge or redress to acts or powers exercised by the authorities under the decree.