11 Dec 2014

No legal redress for suspended Nauru MPs

5:24 pm on 11 December 2014

Five opposition MPs in Nauru have lost their bid to overturn a decision by the government to suspend them from parliament.

3 of the MPs were banned in May and another two, including a former president, were suspended in June after they campaigned in support of their colleagues.

The suspensions had been justified on the grounds that the MPs, by criticising controversial government moves such as the removal of the then resident magistrate and chief justice, had harmed the international reputation of Nauru.

One of the MPs, former justice minister Mathew Batsiua, says the Supreme Court has dismissed their appeal that parliament had behaved unlawfully in suspending them.

"I guess the gist of their thinking is that they do not want to interfere in the procedures of parliament and so whether or not they have jurisdiction and they believe, as conveyed in their decision, that they do not have jurisdiction."

Suspended Nauru MP, Mathew Batsiua.