23 Jul 2002

Fiji parliament reopens with plea for unity

5:40 pm on 23 July 2002

Fiji's president, Ratu Josefa Iloilo, has opened a new session of parliament with a plea for national unity.

Addressing a joint meeting of the House of Representatives and the Senate, President Iloilo said two years ago the country was racially torn by the coup and faced great economic and social destruction.

But, he said, since then different sectors of the community have contributed to bridge the gap to promote reconcilation between the two races.

Outlining government policy, the president said the state will continue to invest in the economy to make up the shortfall from the private sector investment.

He called on all stakeholders to salvage the ailing sugar industry, and promised more government help for the agricultural sector.

President Iloilo said the government will carry out a major review of all laws enacted since 1985, including the Proceeds of Crime Bill.

It would also introduce a Code of Conduct Bill, a Media Bill and a Freedom of Information Bill.