16 Jan 2015

Call for tradition in Kiribati parliament

4:30 pm on 16 January 2015

The speaker of the Kiribati parliament says the country needs to seriously consider incorporating some tradition meeting concepts into the parliamentary system.

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Photo: RNZ

Taomati Iuta -- a parliamentarian for over 25 years -- says some of the concepts from the Western-based parliamentary systems used in Kiribati are not appropriate to i-Kiribati people.

Taomati says under the maneaba, or meeting house, system, elders conducted their business with respect and followed village rules, instead of shouting and accusing each other of stealing and making personal attacks.

He says while it would be challenging to implement, there might be some concepts of the traditional way of meeting that could be married to the parliamentary system to better reflect Kiribati ways.

He says opposition MPs have alreaady rejected the idea.