Fiji Labour Party leader, Mahendra Chaudhry is urging the government to allocate adequate funds in the 2023/24 Budget for the establishment of a Truth and Reconciliation Commission following the Reconciliation ceremony organized by the Methodist Church in Fiji at the Girmit celebrations last month.
In a letter to the Prime Minister, Chaudhry says they urge that adequate funds be provided in the budget to set up a secretariat for organising the necessary public consultations and attending to other administrative and legislative arrangements in the matter.
Chaudhry says he reminded the Prime Minister that during the 2022 election campaign he himself had advocated a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to “look at the mistakes of the past” in a bid to unite our various communities.
The former Prime Minister says there could be no better time than now to move in this direction as despite their best efforts, national unity has evaded for so long because of a lack of trust on both sides.
He says there is still a long way to go to establish the truth on the events of 1987, 2000 and 2006 to grant its victims justice but more importantly, they must look to the future and take concrete steps to prevent coups and other forms of political violence from ever again destroying the fabric of the society.
Chaudhry in the letter further says the purpose of such an institution would be to create a better understanding between Fiji’s diverse communities and to advice government on the steps it should take to promote national harmony, understanding and peace.
He adds it should also be empowered to address grievances and concerns of the different communities and groups that constitute our nation in a bid to resolve issues before they flare up.
Stay tuned for the latest news on our radio stations