Fiji Coalition Disturbed By PM Comments

The Fiji NGO Coalition on Human Rights (NGOCHR) is disappointed and disturbed by recent comments made by Prime Minister, Voreqe Bainimarama, on same-sex marriage. Yesterday during the official opening of the Raralevu subdivision in Tailevu, Mr Bainimarama said as long as FijiFirst was in government “Fiji will not allow same-sex marriage.”

The Prime Minister has shared similar homophobic sentiments in the past. “The 2013 Constitution prohibits discrimination against people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and gender expression. The LGBTQI community is already marginalised within our society and these comments made by someone in authority, such as the Prime Minister, are extremely dangerous and only exacerbate the existing discrimination against members of the LGBTQI community,” said NGOCHR Chair Nalini Singh.

A statement from the Coalition said the Prime Minister’s comments also threaten the progress made towards human rights by Fiji and especially as the country currently sits as Vice Chair of the UN Human Rights Council, which is a body, which respects, promotes and protects human rights for everyone. Fiji has been commended for having sexual orientation as a status protected from discrimination as far back as the 1997 Constitution and the inclusion of Gender Identity under the 2013 Constitution. Read more via Fiji Sun