Fiji still suffering from colonial policy of “divide and rule”

The colonial policy practiced in Fiji of pitting one community against another has succeeded and its effects still remain according to a preliminary report from the Constitutional Commission.

The report has been circulated for a meeting to get feed-back from local experts and public servants.

It says that as a result of this colonial policy Fiji is now “a nation in crisis with its two major ethnic groups in conflict, creating deep uncertainty amid a declining economy”.

It says both Fijians and Indians were victims of forces beyond them; deprived of free choice and will; both communities suffered greatly in the colonial system.

Instead of dealing with the forces that subordinated and in many respects exploited them, they regarded the other community as the obstacle to the advancement of its members – and made little effort to understand the suffering of the other.

The Chairman of Fiji’s Constitution Commission, Professor Yash Ghai, says people shouldn’t regard preliminary proposals for the constitution as final.

He said it is inaccurate to claim that a document with the preliminary proposals is a “leak”, as has been reported in  Australian and New Zealand media.

Ghai clarified that the document was circulated for a meeting with leading local experts and public servants on some preliminary proposals for the constitution.


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News category: Asia Pacific.

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