22 Mar 2013

Fiji should come clean on political parties: Shameem

12:53 pm on 22 March 2013

A constitutional lawyer and former head of Fiji's Human Rights Commission, Shaista Shameem, says the Fiji regime needs to come clean on which political parties have been successful in getting reregistered.

Regime leader Commodore Frank Bainimarama has blamed alleged fraud practices among political parties for canning plans for a Constituent Assembly which would have debated the draft constitution.

There has been no news yet on which parties have succeeded in getting registered.

People have been urged to give their views on the draft directly to the government over the next two weeks but Dr Shameem says their responses will heavily depend on knowledge about who might be representing them in the future parliament.

"For example if there's only one political party that's been registered or allowed to be registered, because the deadline's passed, what is that political party? People need to know that in order to craft their responses in an appropriate way. Because you might just end up with a one party state."

Dr Shameem says the document has clearly been drafted in a rush and the period for feedback is unnecessarily short.