1 Aug 2020

Judge says Fiji men turn

7:32 am on 1 August 2020

A judge in Fiji says men turn to respond with violence when their partners seek self-autonomy in relationships.

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Photo: 123RF

Justice Daniel Goundar made the comment on Friday while sentencing a 54-year-old farmer to life in prison for murdering his wife at the couple's home last year.

Justice Goundar said the court's duty is to denounce family violence and impose deterrent sentences.

He said Fatai Peni has to serve 20 years before a pardon can be considered.

During the trial on 17 July, the court heard that on 29 December, Fatai Peni and 47-year-old Apete Bale were involved in a heated argument where the victim was accused of having an extra-marital affair.

Peni slit his wife's throat and later produced himself at the police station. He pleaded guilty and was convicted by the court.

Justice Goundar said the killing was gruesome as the deceased was a wife, mother and grandmother.

He said when the deceased chose her own course in life, the offender was not willing to accept that his wife had a right to make that choice.

He said the motive for the killing reflected the entrenched patriarchal view that women had no right to self-autonomy.

Justice Goundar said Peni took away a human life that he was supposed to protect.