16 Nov 2015

Fiji government defends appointment

1:00 pm on 16 November 2015

The Fiji government has defended the appointment of Colonel Sitiveni Qiliho as acting Police Commissioner, saying due process was followed.

A Suva lawyer Richard Naidu resigned at the weekend from his seat on the Constitutional Offices Commission, saying the body was politicised and merely a rubber stamp.

Mr Naidu was the opposition's appointee to the commission which is responsible for key state appointments.

The government says Mr Naidu's claims are wrong and he agreed at a meeting in April to delegate authority for acting appointments to the commission's chairperson, the prime minister Frank Bainimarama.

It says Mr Naidu also agreed urgent matters would be dealt with by email or fax.

It says Mr Naidu is wrong to claim the Commission is politicised as three non-politicians hold seats on the body alongside representatives from the government and the opposition.

Under Fiji's constitution, the Prime Minister, the Attorney General, and the Leader of the Opposition each have a seat on the commission.

Two of the non-politicians are appointed on the advice of the government and one on the advice of the opposition.

Fiji government buildings

Fiji government buildings Photo: RNZI / Sally Round

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