9 Apr 2015

NFP calls for release of Fiji election report

1:56 pm on 9 April 2015

Fiji's opposition National Federation Party has called for the release of the final report of the Multinational Observer Group about last September's election.

Ballot box in a Vanuatu election.

Ballot box in a Vanuatu election. Photo: RNZ / Johnny Blades

It says as a matter of transparency and accountability, the government should publicly release the full contents of the report.

It says if the report has not been handed over to the Fiji government, then the Multinational Observer Group must inform all stakeholders why there has been a delay.

There were 92 observers from 13 countries, whose preliminary statement said that the elections broadly represented the will of the Fijian voters but it also noted the media's limited ability to examine rigorously the claims of candidates and parties.

In the two days before the election, all reporting on political campaigns was banned by decree, with the punishment for offending up to ten years in jail and a fine of 25,000 US dollars.

The regime also threatened individuals with up to ten years in jail if they were caught making an election-related comment on the phone or via the internet in the two days before the poll.

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