9 Aug 2008

Fiji charter too descripitive, says academic

8:12 am on 9 August 2008

One of the architects of the Fiji constitution, Brij Lal, says the interim regime's People's Charter is too prescriptive and appears to aim at creating an ideal world or utopia.

Dr Lal, who is with the Australian National University, says he questions the role defined for the military which he says has been the single most important source of instability in Fiji in the past 20 years.

The interim regime wants to adopt the charter and a new electoral system while purportedly adhereing to the constitution.

Dr Lal says imposing the charter through a presidential decree and not in a parliament vote may undermine the project.

"I think that for the charter and some of the recommendations to have credibility, they have to be endorsed through parliament. They can have them decreed but then if large sections of the community do not approve of the changes, then the next government could easily dismantle them."