Attorney-General Siromi Turaga says the Government is determined to review and makes changes to the draconian Media Industry Development Act.
Speaking at the Fiji Law Society Convention in Pacific Harbour today, Turaga said Government is committed to improving how Fiji is governed and needed the support of stakeholders, particularly the Fiji Law Society.
Turaga said a free and independent media is not subjected to draconian laws, but helps build an informed society and has the ability to express new ideas without fear.
He said the Act in its current form is not consistent with these principles, and they will consult widely with the communities to change this.
“Transparency in Government means that what Government does is visible. We are committed to consulting widely with the community, particularly those affected by the laws passed by the previous Government.”
The Attorney-General highlighted that change may come slowly as a consequence, but it will surely come.
“This does not mean that Government will act slowly. Measures are designed to rid some of the wrongs and damages done to the country and the economy, which will be prioritized.”
Turaga has also acknowledged and commended the Fiji Law Society for its strong support for the rule of law despite a few years in very challenging circumstances.
He said the strong support of the rule of law and rightly expressing concerns when it has been undermined by the Government gave voice to the concerns of many even if it displeases his predecessor.
“I am encouraging lawyers to serve their communities and give back in any way they can, and this also requires them to uphold justice and act when it is undermined.”
“If the legal profession does not speak up or ask the relevant questions on the issues concerning the rule of law, then who will.”
“Lawyers have a fundamental duty to protect our society, and they must address inequality in all forms and act against abuse of political power,” the Attorney-General added.
The workshop will continue till tomorrow.