BY RESEARCH TEAM
The Citizens’ Constitutional Forum (CCF) organized a successful Annual Public Forum (APF) on the Fijian Bill of Rights at the Pasifika Campus, Suva on December 2, 2016. The event was co hosted with Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM) and the Fiji National University (FNU).
The APF converged four panelists who deliberated on the theme “Is the Fijian Bill of Rights Divisible” and its relevant discourse. The panelists included the Director of Fiji Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Commission Mr. Ashwin Raj, prominent constitutional lawyer Mr. Richard Naidu, Executive Director of FemLINK Pacific Ms.Sharon Bhagwan Rolls and Member of Parliament Honourable Matai Akaoula. The Regional Representative of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Dr.Chitralekha Massey, moderated the session.
“The primary objective of the Annual Public Forum is to educate and empower people on their rights enshrined in the Fijian Bill of Rights under the Constitution in order to encourage active citizenry and provide the space for robust discussions on issues of national significance,” said Mr. Bulutani Mataitawakilai, the Chief Executive Officer of CCF.
Mr. Mataitawakilai highlighted that the Annual Public Forum is a major event for CCF and is a continuation of the Public Lecture series from last year. He thanked donors such as the European Union for their vital support in enabling important public forums of this nature to take shape.
The Dean of School of Business, Hospitality and Tourism Studies Professor Ram Karan thanked the CCF and FWRM for providing FNU with the opportunity to host such a great public event and looked forward to future cooperation.
The Honorable Minister for Economy and Attorney-General Mr. Aiyaz Sayed- Khaiyum delivered the closing remarks highlighting the Government’s intent in implementing the Bill of Rights.
The Annual Public Forum had a good attendance and was attended by a diverse audience from different backgrounds.