19 Feb 2008

Fiji's interim Prime Minister appoints himself chairman of Great Council of Chiefs

8:53 am on 19 February 2008

Fiji's interim Prime Minister has appointed himself chairman of the Great Council of Chiefs following a gazette issued under his name last week.

The Fiji Times reports last weeks gazette on the Fijian Affairs Act states that each of the 14 provinces and Rotuma will have three representatives.

And it went onto say that as chairman, Commodore Frank Bainimarama will appoint members that make up 52 members of the council.

The previous council had 62 members.

A former life member Sitiveni Rabuka says a noticeable difference was the appointment of council members by the interim prime minister minister.

However, interim Attorney- General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum says Commodore Frank Bainimarama appoints on the recommendation of the provincial councils.

The gazette said Commodore Bainimarama will appoint six co-opt members who are chiefs by right.

As chairman he may also suspend, discipline or dismiss any member who brings disrepute to the council.