6 Aug 2008

Fiji People's Charter looks to steer country from divisive leadership

8:02 pm on 6 August 2008

The Fiji Peoples Charter says a racially-divisive leadership has contributed to Fiji becoming a fractured and fragmented society.

The National Council for Building a Better Fiji has endorsed the charter, which is supposed to map the way forward for Fiji, addressing good governance, social and economic development and the economy.

The charter has been released to local media as the six week-wider public consultation process over the document begins.

The Fijilive website reports that the charter proposes that Fijian be adopted as the common name for all citizens, with the indigenous people being called the iTaukei, because it says the people of Fiji lack a common national identity.

Interim prime minister Commodore Frank Bainimarama has championed the charter as a way to stop political corruption, weed out racism in government, and revamp the country's voting system.

It proposes constitutional changes, including the use of a common roll for all future elections.

It further outlines realigning the role of the military, and an Anti-Discrimination Act, reducing poverty, improving health service delivery and enhancing global integration.

The charter also recommends a greater role for the military in Fiji's future affairs, and outsourcing of some government departments.