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Fiji Time: 6:51 PM on Saturday 19 April

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Investigative reporting must go on

Felix Chaudhary
Sunday, December 08, 2013

MEDIA fairness and balance should not prevent investigative reporting and holding public office holders accountable by news agencies in the country.

"The need for fairness and balance doesn't preclude investigative reporting and especially journalists holding public office holders more accountable," said Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama.

Speaking at the opening of the 15th Attorney-General's Conference in Natadola on Friday, he stressed the Media Authority was not established to muzzle freedom of expression.

"As in the case of our lawyers, we look to our journalists to assist in the process of introducing a genuine democracy," he said.

"The Media Authority doesn't exist to wield a big stick and inhibit public discourse. It exists to remind the media of its ultimate obligation to report with scrupulous fairness and balance in the interests of every Fijian."

In regards to public office holders, the PM said the Constitution had unprecedented accountability provisions.

"These include the Accountability and Transparency Commission that will hold the President, all ministers and senior civil servants accountable.

"The Constitution will extend the existing powers available to hold individuals to account through FICAC, the Fiji Independent Commission against Corruption."