11 Mar 2013

Former Fiji deputy PM believes registar of political parties resigned to save reputation

1:51 pm on 11 March 2013

A former Fiji deputy prime minister says he is shocked at the sudden resignation of the registrar of political parties and believes she resigned to save her reputation.

The registrar Mere Vuniwaqa resigned on Friday - the day her office was expected to announce which parties, if any, had been successfully re-registered under the regime's political parties decree.

A former deputy prime minister Dr Tupeni Baba says he believes Ms Vuniwaqa found it difficult to accept certain things mooted by the regime, in particular by the attorney general.

"There would be all sorts of expectations from the regime, particularly from the AG. And in that situation she'd find a lot of pressure from the regime. And I think there will come a point when it'd be very, very hard for her to stand up as a lawyer if she wants to protect her professional reputation as a lawyer and as a good lawyer at that. I don't think she'd be able to stand the crap that would be given to her."

Dr Tupeni Baba says there will be enormous implications from Mere Vuniwaqa's resignation.

He says he hopes whoever succeeds her can stand up to leaders who may require the office to act against the proposed political parties.

Ms Vuniwaqa has not been available for comment.