13 April 2009
Secretary-General
SG/SM/12180

Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

DISMAYED BY ABROGATION OF CONSTITUTION, DECLARATION OF PUBLIC EMERGENCY IN FIJI,


SECRETARY-GENERAL CALLS FOR ‘URGENT ACTION’ TO RESTORE LEGITIMATE GOVERNMENT


The following statement was issued on Friday, 10 April, by the Spokesperson for UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:


The Secretary-General has learned with deep dismay the abrogation of the Constitution of Fiji, dismissal of the judiciary, declaration of public emergency and a clear attempt to prolong rule by an unelected executive by setting a new time frame of five years (by 2014) for parliamentary elections.  These steps were taken following the ruling by the Court of Appeal a day earlier, which declared the 2006 dismissal of the elected Government and the appointment of the Interim Government to be unlawful.


The Secretary-General had called in his statement yesterday for respect for human rights, the rule of law and the judicial process.  The latest measures are a clear rejection of the legal process and are contrary to the stated common objective of returning the country to an elected Government as soon as possible.  The Secretary-General strongly deplores these steps and calls for urgent action towards their reversal and the restoration of a legitimate Government and constitutional order.


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