Draft Police Bill will turn Fiji into a Police State
Thursday 4th March 2021
Draconian provisions of the draft Police Bill if enacted by Parliament will turn Fiji into a Police State, said National Federation Party Leader Professor Biman Prasad.
“Provisions of the draft Bill is at the height of totalitarianism, absolute dictatorship and complete erosion of fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens”, the NFP Leader said.
He questioned why people are being asked to comment on draft legislation.
“Government’s deviousness is at work here. It will bring the Bill to Parliament under Standing Order 51 to avoid debate and scrutiny, ride roughshod over the mandate of the people, and pass it”.
“This Bill is similar to the draft National Registration Bill that was highlighted in Parliament on 11th February by NFP President Honourable Pio Tikoduadua”.
“It is abundantly clear that in its desperate bid to remain in power after realising massive loss of support, the Fiji First government wants to instill fear and maintain power through thuggery”.
“Government has found an avenue to trample upon the rights and dignity of people through a new Police Bill claiming its review is long overdue”.
“Provisions of this Bill will clearly be used to persecute opposition political leaders and the civil society”.
“Provisions like imposition of life imprisonment or $1 million fine on people who refuse to provide passwords of their electronic devices, police being allowed to eavesdrop and record conversations, recruitment of informers through lure of payment etc. are ghastly and have no place in Fiji”.
“Why is government treating its citizens like terrorists and hardened criminals?
“Combined with the Cybercrime Act, this would mean the brutal end to fundamental rights and freedoms that this government brags about as being fully protected under its 2013 Constitution”.
“It is inconceivable that such a Bill has even been drafted. This Bill shouldn’t reach the floor of Parliament because it will entrench dictatorship, thuggery and persecution”.