27 Apr 2018

Fiji's SODELPA wants to review constitution

6:06 pm on 27 April 2018

Full consultation with the people of Fiji on the 2013 constitution will be initiated if the opposition SODELPA party wins the election, its leader and former prime minister Sitiveni Rabuka says.

Fiji SODELPA leader Sitiveni Rabuka

Fiji SODELPA leader Sitiveni Rabuka Photo: AFP

Mr Rabuka told the University of Fiji's School of Law this week that he remained confident and hopeful that Fiji would return to genuine democracy and constitutional legitimacy.

If his party won this year's election he would seek an all-parties consensus in parliament for a review of the 2013 constitution, Mr Rabuka said.

Islands Business and the Fiji Times reported the leader saying that the aim of such a review was to ensure the constitution genuinely reflected the wishes and the aspirations of the people of Fiji.

He also elaborated on why he was opposed to the usage of "Fijian" as the common name.

"For an indigenous iTaukei, to be called a 'Fijian' means much more than being a citizen of Fiji. It means being registered in the iVola ni Kawa Bula as a member of a customary landowning mataqali or clan," Mr Rabuka said.

"It is for this reason, that it has been very hard for many iTaukei to understand the Bainimarama regime's rationale for unilaterally appropriating the name 'Fijian' for use as the common name of all Fiji citizens."

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