18 Aug 2009

Former Fiji sugar boss says judiciary mocks human rights

3:12 pm on 18 August 2009

A former senior member of the Fiji sugar industry says his human rights are being violated because of a lack of an independent and impartial judiciary.

The Chief Executive of the Sugar Growers Council, Jagannath Sami, took civil action for damages against members of the interim military regime but his case has been terminated by the defendant.

Mr Sami was forcibly removed from his role by the military and police in 2007 despite a court an injunction against the military.

Mr Sami says the Acting Chief Registrar of the High Court has thrown out his case on the basis of the interim regime's 'Termination of Proceedings' certificate.

He says this makes a mockery of the judicial system.

"It is a human rights issue, it is a serious human rights issue, because we don't have a constitution at the moment. We are run by decrees, at the whim of the regime, so where does law and order and independence of the judiciary stand?"

Jagannath Sami says censorship limits local awareness of situations like his and he is calling for the international community to condemn the abuse of human rights in Fiji.