9 Jun 2007

CCF says holding general elections in Fiji soon should not be a priority

9:15 am on 9 June 2007

The Citizens Constitutional Forum says holding general elections in Fiji in the shortest possible time should not be the priority.

An independent assessment commissioned by the Joint Forum - Fiji Working Group says elections could be held as early as November next year and the deposed prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, wants them held even earlier.

But the CCF's executive director, the Rev Akuila Yabaki, says it is far more important that the preparations for the elections are adequate and the process is free and fair overall and that they are held in the shortest possible time.

Radio Legend quotes the Rev Yabaki as saying an inflexible time frame may not be advisable if it ignores current realities such as the political climate.

He says if the recommended time frame is to be adhered to, it should not be an excuse for inadequate election preparations as was the case when early elections were called last year.