19 Jan 2015

Fiji's opposition united on media decree

8:47 pm on 19 January 2015

The leader of Fiji's main opposition party has joined calls for the country's media decree to be repealed.

The SODELPA leader, Ro Teimumu Kepa, says the media is still fearful about reports that cast a negative light on the Government.

The leader of the National Federation Party, Biman Prasad, says the Media Industry Development Decree, gazetted in 2010 during the military rule, still threatens journalists with its powers to order huge fines and jail terms.

Ro Teimumu says now that Fiji is a democracy, the decree has to go.

"We feel very strongly that the media, they still work in that climate where they are still fearful of how they can be taken to task by whatever it is that they print or broadcast that seems to be against the Government, that doesn't cast the Government in a good light."

Ro Teimumu Kepa says a truly independent regulatory body should be set up in the place of the Media Industry Development Authority.

Ro Teimumu Kepa, Fiji's SODELPA leader

Ro Teimumu Kepa, Fiji's SODELPA leader Photo: RNZ / Republika