17 Apr 2013

FBC reports Fiji may have early elections

3:16 pm on 17 April 2013

The Fiji Broadcasting Corporation says the country may have early elections after the regime initially scheduled them for September next year.

The FBC says this was hinted by the prime minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, in a speech at a dinner in Papua New Guinea.

It says according to the Commodore, this depends on how soon the new constitution is ready.

This comes as the country's attorney-general, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, says there are time constraints to have a referendum on the new constitution as suggested by the political leaders ousted in the 2006 coup.

Commodore Bainimarama says he hoped the new constitution was ready before his current visit to PNG.

Submissions can be made for another two weeks after the regime extended a deadline twice.

Three months ago, it dumped an earlier draft, which had been drawn up to replace the 1997 constitution that the regime scrapped four years ago when the court of appeal ruled that the interim government was illegal.