11 Aug 2009

Fiji domestic violence decree queried

2:42 pm on 11 August 2009

The motivation behind Fiji's new Domestic Violence Decree is coming under scrutiny.

Legislation on the issue had been a "work in progress" for a number of years and the decree just promulgated is said to be very similar to a bill drawn up in 2006.

The Women's Crisis Centre says that legislation contains some elements they had worked hard to get included.

But the Centre's co-ordinators, Shamima Ali, says the difficulty is a lack of consultation before the decree was made and an acknowledgement of the developments made in the area in recent times:

"Because it is done by this regime and has been promulgated, whether it is a whitewash to get women on side or whether there is a genuine desire on their part to ensure that women get access to justice and are protected and families are protected and so on."

Shamima Ali says the regime does not have the resources to be able to implement what is set out in the decree.