22 Apr 2003

Fiji Labour leader seeks government of national unity

7:43 am on 22 April 2003

The Fiji Labour party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry, has proposed a government of national unity to the prime minister, Laisenia Qarase.

Mr Chaudhry says such a government is the only way to get the country out of its current problems.

The Labour leader has told Fiji TV he does not see any other way of achieving genuine reconciliation, restoring the economy, creating confidence and arresting the brain drain.

Mr Chaudhry says a government of national unity would need a charter with clearly defined objectives agreed by all on what is to be achieved in its time frame.

He says he has put the idea to the prime minister and although Mr Qarase is not convinced, he has agreed to consider the proposal.

Mr Chaudhry says Fiji is at a very critical stage and if they cannot put aside their differences to move the country forward, then it has a very bleak future.

He says if the proposal for a government of national unity does not work, they will have to wait for the outcome of the Supreme Court ruling in June on the Labour Party's inclusion in a multi-party government.