25 Jun 2007

Pacific faces shortage of lawyers to draft new laws

12:01 pm on 25 June 2007

The Pacific region is facing a chronic shortage of lawyers to draft legislation.

Governments in the region say they are struggling to attract and retain the number of specialist lawyers needed to write new laws that address areas like health, public sector reform and education.

A forum being held this week in Vanuatu is looking into the problem has been organised by the Commonwealth Secretariat in partnership with others.

The head of the Justice Section at the Commonwealth Secretariat, Katalaina Sapolu, says the Forum will look at what the shortages means for the region, especially in areas of the Pacific Plan.

"That is one of the underlying drivers of this exercise here in the Pacific is we must have indigenous drafters who are more aware of the needs of the people, and who can actually draft laws that will give effect to the spirit of the pacific plan"

Katalaina Sapolu