THE draft constitution released by the Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama on Thursday proposes that immunity granted under the 1990 Constitution shall continue.
A provision in the draft document says that notwithstanding the abrogation of the Constitution Amendment Act 1997 and despite the repeal of the Constitution of the Sovereign Democratic Republic of Fiji (Promulgation Decree, 1990), the immunity granted in Chapter XIV of the Constitution of 1990 shall continue.
The draft, which was reviewed by a government legal team, says immunities granted to prescribed political events under the Limitation of Liability for Prescribed Political Events Decree 2010 shall continue in existence. It states the immunity provision should not be reviewed, amended, altered, repealed or revoked by a parliament.
The draft constitution proposes that absolute and unconditional immunity should be irrevocably granted to the President, Prime Minister and cabinet ministers, the military, police, Fiji Corrections Service, the judiciary, the public service and any public office.
Immunity is to be granted from any criminal prosecution and from any civil or any other liability in any court or tribunal as a result of any direct or indirect participation, appointment or involvement in the government from December 2006 to the date of the first sitting of a parliament elected after the commencement of the new constitution.
However, any such immunity for the period between July 18, 2012, to the date of the first sitting of a parliament elected after the commencement of the new constitution shall not apply to any offence under sections 77 to 390 of the Crimes Decree 2009.