Legend FM news reported on Saturday that interim Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said Crawford’s opinion originated through the “misguided” direction from the anonymous Fiji lawyers who asked for his opinion.
Also on Saturday, the
Titled “Academic says CJ unconstitutional”, the report written by Cheeriann Wilson led off with Crawford’s pronouncement that the process of Gates’ appointment was constitutionally flawed.
Over the week, several different aspects of Crawford’s report have been repeated in the local media.
Crawford’s opinion has been downloaded more than 25 times since Intelligentsiya posted it on February 21.
On the Intelligentsiya blog, comments have also flowed in about Crawford’s legal viewpoint. The majority of people commenting have applauded the legal opinion, while some have accused him of glossing over war crimes committed by the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom over the war in Iraq and the nuclear programmes of the US and UK.
Somebody sympathetic to Crawford’s legal stand said: “I confess that I am no expert in legal opinion but if Crawford's comment is something to go by, I'd like to suggest that we do something constructive out of it.”
A sceptical poster said: “If it is convenient for an overseas legal expert to adjudicate
Meanwhile, in a rather confusing story on Page 4 of Saturday’s Fiji Times headlined “State of
Yet in the following paragraphs its quotes interim Attorney-General Sayed-Khaiyum as saying that President Ratu Josefa Iloilo declared the Public Emergency Regulation active from February 5.
Presumably, what the article is talking about is the extension of the “state of emergency” period, which the interim administration is using as justification for the limiting of citizens’ fundamental rights such as free speech and freedom of association (public sector unions have been warned against strike action over unsettled grievances with the state on the grounds that they would be in breach of the regulation).