The Forum Secretary-General, Tuiloma Neroni Slade, has welcomed the announcement by Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama that the Public Emergency Regulation (PER) will be lifted on 7 January 2012. He said this is an important development and a step in the right direction, noting also the announced proposal for nationwide consultations on a new constitution for Fiji.
Secretary General Slade expressed hope for the earliest restoration of normality and legitimacy as a result of the lifting of the PER; and also for the broadest measure of inclusive national consultations as vital ingredients for free and fair elections.
He said that as Forum Leaders had done in their September 2011 meeting Communiqué, Leaders had consistently called for the “commencement of genuine, inclusive political dialogue in Fiji between parties without preconditions or predetermined outcomes”. In doing so, Forum Leaders also “reaffirmed the underlying values of the Forum, namely respect for democracy, good governance and the rule of law”.
The Secretary General also recalled the clear commitment “of all Forum members to encourage and support Fiji’s early return to parliamentary democracy, including their standing offer of practical assistance in addressing the challenges faced by Fiji”.
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