THE women of Vitogo Village and surrounding settlements have called on the Constitution Commission to ensure there is equal representation of women and men in a new parliament.
Making submissions on behalf of the women of Vitogo yesterday, Adi Paulini Delai suggested that 50 per cent of the parliamentarians be women.
Adi Paulini said there needed to be a law that also allow women to be represented at all provincial and district councils and government departments.
She said this would be in accordance with the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). Ms Delai said the rights of minority groups must also be addressed by the commission.
She said the new constitution must protect the rights of the minority groups.
"We propose that the human rights of those who were born and live in Fiji be protected by the constitution," Adi Paulini said.
Her submissions were well received by commission member Doctor Satendra Nandan who noted it was pleasing that women's groups were coming forward with their submissions on equal rights. Dr Nandan said he was also pleased to hear submissions on the rights of the minorities.
Also making submissions yesterday was Radini vanua o Vitogo Adi Litiana Sovasova who proposed that the iTaukei be called Fijians.
Adi Litiana said the word Fijian had a history of reflecting the relationships that landowners had with their land, traditional fishing grounds and their resources.
"The word Fijian portrays our identity and it sets us apart from all of the countries in the world — it makes us unique," Adi Litiana said.