Fiji judges re-appointedMay 23rd, 2009 - 11:30 am ICT by IANS
Wellington, May 23 (DPA) Fiji’s Chief Justice, Briton Anthony Gates, who ruled last year that the military’s seizure of power in a bloodless coup in December 2006 was legal, has been re-appointed, it was reported from the capital Suva on Saturday.
President Josefa Iloilo sacked all the country’s judges and abolished the constitution on April 10 after the Court of Appeal overturned Gates’ ruling and declared the regime headed by military strongman Voreqe Bainimarama illegal.
The ailing 88-year-old president, who supports Bainimarama, re-appointed Gates and fellow High Court judges Davendra Pathik and Daniel Gounder Friday and swore in Sosefo Inoke as a new judge.
Pathik was on the bench with Gates in the three-judge panel that rejected claims by former prime minister Laisenia Qarase that he had been illegally ousted by Bainimarama.
New Zealand and Australian lawyers have frequently served as judges in Fiji, and the New Zealand Law Society’s president John Marshall urged them last month not to work for the military regime.
Gates defended his decision to accept re-appointment, the Fiji Daily Post said Saturday, quoting him as saying, “There is no doubt that the judiciary must continue.
“Without the judges there will be no court and therefore no remedies will be available for clients and no justice for the victims of serious crimes,” he said.
Fiji is being governed under emergency regulations which censor the media and ban political meetings.
- Fiji president revokes constitution, no election till 2014 (Lead) - Apr 10, 2009
- Fiji strongman Bainimarama back in power (Lead) - Apr 11, 2009
- Emergency in Fiji as president revokes constitution (Second Lead) - Apr 10, 2009
- Fiji strongman gets honour for service to humanity - Apr 24, 2009
- South Pacific Forum poised to suspend Fiji - May 01, 2009
- New Zealand threatened Fiji's military chief with 'loss of family access' over coup - Dec 25, 2010
- Military coup was illegal, rules Fiji court - Apr 09, 2009
- Former Fiji premier faces corruption trial - Jan 15, 2010
- Fiji military government censors media - Apr 12, 2009
- Fiji military regime bans all media criticism - Apr 13, 2009
- Fiji's neighbours disagree on how to deal with its military regime - May 19, 2009
- Fiji military chief says he might delay promised elections - Jul 13, 2010
- Fiji military government tightens control - Apr 14, 2009
- Fiji president revokes constitution, bans elections to 2014 - Apr 10, 2009
- Fiji strongman Bainimarama back in charge - Apr 11, 2009
Tags: australian lawyers, bloodless coup, briton, capital suva, court of appeal, emergency regulations, former prime minister, gounder, high court judges, iloilo, john marshall, josefa, judge panel, laisenia qarase, military regime, military strongman, no doubt, pathik, political meetings, serious crimes