11 Apr 2014

NZ's McCully sees good quality progress towards elections

4:35 am on 11 April 2014

The New Zealand Foreign Minister Murray McCully says he's continuing to see good quality progress in Fiji towards elections.

Mr McCully is on his first visit to Suva since New Zealand lifted sanctions on the Fiji regime last month in recognition of progress towards the September polls.

Unions and political parties have complained of growing restrictions on the media, unions and civil society and of the regime leader Rear Admiral Frank Bainimarama ignoring the law and campaigning before registering his party.

But Mr McCully says he does not want to critique the way electoral rules are being enforced.

"We're seeing a six month process towards elections in which the machinery is working, political parties are being formed, which is a big step forward from where we were and I believe that the improvements will continue if New Zealand stays engaged in the process."

Mr McCully describes the atmosphere in Fiji as pretty competitive and he does not agree with those that say the election is a done deal.