Fiji elections a welcome turning point: Commonwealth

Update: 5:39AM COMMONWEALTH secretary general Kamalesh Sharma has issued a statement saying the election in Fiji has been a welcome turning point.

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“The Charter of the Commonwealth recognises the
inalienable right of all Commonwealth citizens to participate in democratic
processes, in particular through free and fair elections in shaping the
societies in which they live,” Mr Sharma said.

He said the people of Fiji must be congratulated for
participating peacefully in large numbers in a democratic process to express
their views clearly on their choice of leaders and representative.

“The authorities of Fiji are also to be commended for
their organization and administration of the election.

“We acknowledge with appreciation the many Commonwealth
countries and individuals who provided support and participated in the
preparation for these 2014 national elections.

“The announcement of the official results is awaited, but
we are encouraged by the preliminary statement issued by the Multinational Observer

Mr Sharma said this election was a critical step in the
countrys return to democratic and civilian constitutional rule.

He urged all concerned to continue working together in
accord with due process to consolidate and strengthen the gains achieved by
this landmark election.