25 Jun 2003

Fiji senators consider court action over appropriations bill

4:03 pm on 25 June 2003

Fiji's Labour party senators are asking the attorney general to explain a multi-million dollar difference between a supplementary appropriations bill and its schedule.

Labour party senators walked out of the upper house when the attorney general, Qoriniasi Bale, accepted the difference but proposed an amendment in the Senate to push the bill through.

Labour party senator, Anand Singh, says this is against the constitution as the senate has never had any powers to amend finance bills and they're considering court action.

"Thats a real option that is available to us, but we're going to give some more thought to it. The other option is that we persuade or prevail upon the government that it ought to do the right thing and not indulge in unconstitutional actions within the senate."

Anand Singh, who was the attorney general in the deposed Labour government, says Mr Bale needs to explain to taxpayers why there was such a discrepancy and why he felt the need to push it through.