30 Jun 2004

Call for Fiji government to look at chiefly titles

1:28 pm on 30 June 2004

There's been a call for the Fiji government to look at the way chiefly titles are determined.

Dr Ropate Qalo, the head of the Social and Economic development school at the University of the South Pacific, says currently genealogy is all that is considered when a title is contested.

He says disputes are decided by the Native Lands Commission but it needs to take into account other factors.

"I think the Fiji government or the Fijian Affairs ministry needs to do more work in that area so that you can bring out more knowledge for people to look at, and work out the details that we should be accepting nowadays."

Dr Qalo says reconciliation within the indigenous Fijian community needs to be a priority because there are too many disputes over leadership.

He's calling for officials to go into villages to discuss what would be most appropriate in determining chiefly titles.