Fijian passports are issued to citizens of Fiji by the Passport Division of the Department of Immigration, under the ambits of the Fiji Islands Passports Act 2002. Fiji issues three types of passport: Ordinary Passport – Bright blue cover. Issued to ordinary citizens of Fiji. Valid for ten years. Diplomatic Passport – Scarlet red cover. Issued to the President and spouse, Prime Minister and spouse, government ministers and government officials working in diplomatic missions. Valid for ten years, but validity may be limited by term of appointment. Certificate of identity – May be issued to facilitate emergency travel, can be issued to non-citizens. Valid for a single trip only. All passport applications lodged within Fiji or its diplomatic missions are referred to the Passport Division in Suva for assessment and issue. Certificates of identity may be issued by Fijian diplomatic missions for emergency travel only; as of 1 January 2017, Fijian citizens had visa-free or visa on arrival access to 79 countries and territories, ranking the Fijian passport 61st in terms of travel freedom according to the Henley visa restrictions index.
Fiji Islands Passports Act 2002
Visa policy of Fiji
Visitors to Fiji must obtain a visa from one of the Fijian diplomatic missions unless they come from one of the 107 visa exempt countries. All visitors must hold a passport valid for 6 months. Citizens of the following 107 countries and territories do not require a visa for Fiji for visits up to 4 months, they are issued with Visitor Permits on arrival for stays not exceeding 4 months, which may be extended on application for up to two months at a time for an aggregate of six months. Mutual visa-free agreements were signed with Croatia in February 2019 and Georgia in March 2019 and are yet to be ratified. Most visitors arriving to Fiji were from the following countries of nationality: Visa requirements for Fijian citizens
Monarchy of Fiji
The monarchy of Fiji arose in the mid-nineteenth century when native ruler Seru Epenisa Cakobau consolidated control of the Fijian Islands and declared himself King or paramount chief of Fiji. In 1874, he voluntarily ceded sovereignty of the islands to Britain, which made Fiji a Crown colony within the British Empire. After nearly a century of British rule, Fiji became a Dominion, an independent sovereign state within the Commonwealth of Nations with Elizabeth II as head of state. After a second military coup in 1987, Fiji became a republic, the monarchy was ended; the Great Council of Chiefs recognised Elizabeth II as Tui Viti or the traditional Queen of Fiji, but the position is not one of a constitutional, or otherwise legal nature. The Great Council of Chiefs was disestablished in 2012 by decree. Elizabeth II does not use the title, the Fijian government does not recognise it. In the late 1840s, the Vunivalu or ruler of Bau, Tanoa Visawaqa declared himself Tui Viti, which translates as "King of Fiji" or "paramount chief of Fiji".
It is recorded that he used the title in recognition of his political influence over other chiefly states, for instance in Rewa, where he was "Vasu-Levu", Naitasiri and Lau, where he had forged strong alliances, in Macuata, where he was able to intervene in the feuds of the ruling family to establish an ally as Tui Macuata or "paramount chief of Macuata". As the title was never a traditional one, as Bauan influence did not extend to the whole of Fiji, Tanoa Visawaqa's claim to it is viewed by historians as self-proclaimed, driven by astute ambition which would to a certain degree work to the advantage of his successor, his son Seru Epenisa, known as "Cakobau", or "destroyer of Bau". Seru Cakobau ruled the short lived Kingdom of Fiji as Tui Viti, the title became synonymous with him. Before the formation of the Kingdom of Fiji, Seru Cakobau is recorded to have used the title. In 1854, as Tui Viti, he attended a court conducted by Captain Denham of HMS Herald into Cakobau's alleged misdeeds against the Europeans.
The usage of the title brought both disadvantages to the holder. Advantages in that it allowed Cakobau to deal with the Europeans and control the new wealth and technology they brought with them and disadvantages in being held responsible for the actions of Fijians beyond his realm of control, it was the latter in tandem with his claims to the title and European claims for monetary compensation that would contribute to his reasons for ceding Fiji to Britain in 1874. Though Seru Cakobau was not recognised by all Fijians as King of Fiji, his use of the title, its recognition by many of the leading chiefs, led European settlers and foreign powers to treat him as a native king. Though Seru Cakobau was considered equal but not superior by his fellow chiefs, he was recognised as king by the Western powers. In 1874, he was the lead signatory on the deed of cession which granted Britain sovereignty over the islands, it was his efforts that brought Fiji under the guidance of the British Empire. After cession in 1874, all historical records refer to Seru Cakobau as only Vunivalu of Bau, or Ratu Seru Cakobau, indicating the title Tui Viti was lost when the sovereignty of Fiji was ceded to the British Crown.
When Ratu Seru Cakobau signed the deed of cession he presented his prized war club to Queen Victoria, the British monarch, as a symbol of his submission and loyalty. The presentation of the war club, named Na Tutuvi Kuta nei Radi ni Bau refers to the traditional duty of the Vunivalu to protect the principal wife of the Rokotui Bau and can again be taken to mean Cakobau accepted protection from Queen Victoria and her successors. Neither Queen Victoria nor her successors used the title of Tui Viti, but the Fijians considered them Kings and Queens of Fiji in the traditional sense of Tui Viti, not just in the Western sense of Sovereign. In 1970, 96 years of British rule came to an end, Fiji became an independent sovereign state within the Commonwealth of Nations; the official name of the state was the "Dominion of Fiji". Fiji's Head of State was Elizabeth II, represented by a Governor-General and was queen of other countries, such as Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom; the queen's realms were all independent from one another, the Queen acted independently in each realm, but they shared the same person as monarch.
As a constitutional monarchy, executive power was held by a prime minister the leader of the majority party in an elected legislature. The prime minister was appointed by the Governor-General. In 1987, a series of coups resulted in the overthrow of the elected government of Fijian Prime Minister Timoci Bavadra, the declaration of a republic; the first coup, in which Bavadra was deposed, took place on 14 May 1987. The Fijian Supreme Court ruled the coup unconstitutional, the Queen's representative, Governor-General Ratu Sir Penaia Ganilau, unsuccessfully attempted to assert executive power, he opened negotiations, known as the Deuba Talks, with both the deposed government, the Alliance Party, which most indigenous Fijians supported. These negotiations culminated in the Deuba Accord of 23 September 1987, which provided for a government of national unity, in which both parties would be represented under the leadership of the Governor-General. Fearing that the gains of the first coup were about to be lost, Sitiveni Rabuka staged a second coup on 25 September, abolished the monarchy on 6 October, declared Fiji a republic.
Penaia Ganilau resigned as Governor-General on 15 October 1987, Fiji was expelled from the Commonwealth of Nations for a decade. Ten y
Jioji Konousi "George" Konrote, OF, MC is a Fijian politician and retired Major-General of the Fiji Military, President of Fiji since 2015. After commanding a peacekeeping mission in Lebanon, Konrote served as Fiji's High Commissioner to Australia from 2001 to 2006, as Minister of State for Immigration in 2006, as Minister for Employment Opportunities and Industrial Relations from 2014 to 2015, he is the first non-iTaukei president and the first Seventh-day Adventist to be elected by parliament, as previous presidents were selected by the Great Council of Chiefs. Konrote is a native of the island of Rotuma, his days as a pupil at Natabua High School in Lautoka, are described in the prize-winning book on Fiji Kava in the Blood by Peter Thomson. A career soldier, Konrote enlisted into the RFMF in 1966 and trained with New Zealand and Australian defence forces, studying at institutions such as the Australian College of Defence and Strategic Studies and the Australian Defence Force Academy in Canberra and the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University in 2000.
Rising through the ranks of the Fiji Military, he commanded battalions of Fijian soldiers in their peacekeeping efforts in Lebanon during the Fiji's UNIFIL campaign, was subsequently appointed Deputy Force Commander of the UNIFIL operation, the United Nations Assistant Secretary-General and Force Commander in Lebanon. In recognition of his contributions in these fields, Konrote was awarded the UNIFIL Peace Medal, the Military Cross, the Order of Merit, the Order of the Cedar and was made an Officer of the Order of Fiji in 1997. From 2001 to 2006, Konrote served as Fiji's High Commissioner to Australia. After his appointment, equivalent to that of an ambassador, expired at the end of March 2006, he was elected to represent the Rotuman Communal Constituency in the 2006 election, he was subsequently appointed as Minister of State for Immigration and Ex-Servicemen in the Cabinet of Laisenia Qarase, his role in this portfolio abruptly ended when the government was deposed in a military coup led by Commodore Frank Bainimarama on 5 December 2006.
Despite serving in the Qarase government, Konrote became a candidate for Bainimarama's party, FijiFirst, in the 2014 election, winning 1,585 votes. He was subsequently appointed as Minister for Employment Opportunities and Industrial Relations in September 2014. On 12 October 2015, Konrote resigned from Parliament after being elected as President of Fiji, he was sworn in on 12 November 2015. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle ate at the State dinner at the GPH with Parliament Speaker Dr. Jiko Luveni, President Jioji Konrote and First Lady Sarote, on 23 October 2018
An electoral district, election district, or legislative district, called a voting district by the US Census is a territorial subdivision for electing members to a legislative body. Only voters who reside within the district are permitted to vote in an election held there. From a single district, a single member or multiple members might be chosen. Members might be chosen by a first-past-the-post system or a proportional representative system, or another voting method entirely. Members might be chosen through a direct election under universal suffrage, an indirect election, or another form of suffrage; the names for electoral districts vary across countries and for the office being elected. The term constituency is used to refer to an electoral district in British English, but it can refer to the body of eligible voters or all the residents of the represented area or only those who voted for a certain candidate; the terms precinct and election district are more common in American English. In Australia and New Zealand, electoral districts are called electorates, however elsewhere the term electorate refers to the body of voters.
In India electoral districts are referred to as "Nirvachan Kshetra" in Hindi, which can be translated to English as "electoral area" though the official English translation for the term is "constituency". The term "Nirvachan Kshetra" is used while referring to an electoral district in general irrespective of the legislature; when referring to a particular legislatorial constituency, it is referred to as "Kshetra" along with the name of the legislature, in Hindi. Electoral districts for municipal or other local bodies are called "wards". In Canada, districts are colloquially called ridings. Local electoral districts are sometimes called wards, a term which designates administrative subdivisions of a municipality. In local government in the Republic of Ireland voting districts are called "electoral areas". District magnitude is the number of representatives elected from a given district to the same legislative body. A single-member district has one representative. Voting systems that seek proportional representation inherently require multi-member districts, the larger the district magnitude the more proportional a system will tend to be Non-proportional systems may use multi-member districts, as in the House of Commons until 1950, Singapore's Group Representation Constituency, or the New Hampshire House of Representatives.
Under proportional representation systems, district magnitude is an important determinant of the makeup of the elected body. With a larger number of winners, candidates are able to represent proportionately smaller minorities; the geographic distribution of minorities affects their representation - an unpopular nationwide minority can still secure a seat if they are concentrated in a particular district. District magnitude can sometimes vary within the same system during an election. In the Republic of Ireland, for instance, national elections to Dáil Éireann are held using a combination of 3, 4, 5 member districts. In Hong Kong, the magnitude ranged from 3 to 5 in 1998, when the current electoral system was introduced for Legislative Council geographical constituency elections, will range from 5 to 9 in the forthcoming election in September 2012; the only democracies with one single nationwide electoral district and no other territorial correctors are Fiji, The Netherlands, Mozambique, South Africa and Serbia.
Main articles: Apportionment and RedistrictingApportionment is the process of allocating a number of representatives to different regions, such as states or provinces. Apportionment changes are accompanied by redistricting, the redrawing of electoral district boundaries to accommodate the new number of representatives; this redrawing is necessary under single-member district systems, as each new representative requires their own district. Multi-member systems, vary depending on other rules. Ireland, for example, redraws its electoral districts after every census while Belgium uses its existing administrative boundaries for electoral districts and instead modifies the number of representatives allotted to each. Israel and the Netherlands avoid the need for apportionment by electing legislators at-large. Apportionment is done on the basis of population. Seats in the United States House of Representatives, for instance, are reapportioned to individual states every 10 years following a census, with some states that have grown in population gaining seats.
By contrast, seats in the Cantonal Council of Zürich are reapportioned in every election based on the number of votes cast in each district, only made possible by use of multi-member districts, the House of Peoples of Bosnia and Herzegovina, by contrast, is apportioned without regard to population. Malapportionment occurs when voters are under- or over-represented due to variation in district population. Given the complexity of this process, softwa
Parliament of Fiji
The Parliament of the Republic Fiji is the unicameral legislature of the Republic of Fiji. It consists of 51 members elected every 4 years using open-list proportional representation in one multi-member nationwide constituency; the Fijian Parliament dates from 10 October 1970, when Fiji became independent from the United Kingdom. The Parliament replaced the former colonial legislative body, the Legislative Council, which had existed in various forms throughout the entire colonial period. A grandfather clause in the 1970 Constitution, adopted on independence, provided for the old Legislative Council to be renamed as the House of Representatives and remain in office, pending the first post-independence elections in 1972. Since independence, Parliamentary rule has been interrupted three times; the first interruption was from 1987 through 1992, owing to two coups d'état in 1987 instigated by Lieutenant Colonel Sitiveni Rabuka. The second interruption occurred when a coup in 2000 attempted by George Speight rendered the parliamentary system unworkable and resulted in Parliament's dissolution.
A general election in 2001 restored the democratic system. The Republic of Fiji Military Forces overthrew the government again in 2006. No further elections would be held until the September 2014 election; the composition of Parliament has changed over the years. From 1972 to 1987, there were 22 Senators. In 1992, Parliament was enlarged to 70 Representatives and 34 Senators, figures marginally adjusted in 1999 to provide for 71 Representatives and 32 Senators. 25 of these were elected by universal suffrage. The remaining 46 were reserved for Fiji's ethnic communities and were elected from communal electoral rolls: 23 Fijians, 19 Indo-Fijians, 1 Rotuman, 3 "General electors"; the upper chamber of the parliament, the Senate, had 32 members, formally appointed by the President on the nomination of the Great Council of Chiefs, the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition, the Rotuman Islands Council. The Senate was less powerful than the House of Representatives; the Senate's powers over financial bills were more restricted: it could veto them in their entirety, but could not amend them.
The House of Representatives could override a Senatorial veto by passing the bill a second time in the parliamentary session following the one in which it was rejected by the Senate, after a minimum period of six months. Amendments to the Constitution were excepted: the veto of the Senate was absolute. Following the passage of a bill by the House of Representatives, the Senate had 21 days to approve, amend, or reject it; as a result of the parliament building having only one debating chamber, the Senate and House of Representatives used the same chamber at different times. The 2013 Constitution promulgated by the military-backed interim government abolished the Senate and the House of Representatives, instituting a single-chamber 50-member Parliament. Section 54 of the Constitution requires the Fiji Electoral Commission to review the composition of the parliament at least one year before a general election and may if necessary increase or decrease the total number of members. In its review the Commission will ensure that ratio of members to the population is the same as the ratio at the date of the first general election under this Constitution.
Furthermore, the Commission is required to consider the most recent census, the Register of Voters or any other official information available when undertaking its review. The Parliament of Fiji consists of 51 members and is led by the Prime Minister of Fiji, the leader of the largest party of Government; the current Parliament was elected in the 2018 election, with FijiFirst, led by Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, holding a majority of 27 seats. The Social Democratic Liberal Party, led by Sitiveni Rabuka, gained 21 seats and was thus the main Opposition party; the National Federation Party, led by Biman Prasad, gained 3 seats and formally joined the Opposition alongside Sodelpa. Politics of Fiji Legislative Council of Fiji before 1970 House of Representatives of Fiji from 1970 to 2006 Senate of Fiji from 1970 to 2006 List of legislatures by country Parliament of Fiji Live Streaming Fiji Government Online Portal Official Website of the Parliament of Fiji
Fiji the Republic of Fiji, is an island country in Melanesia, part of Oceania in the South Pacific Ocean about 1,100 nautical miles northeast of New Zealand's North Island. Its closest neighbours are Vanuatu to the west, New Caledonia to the southwest, New Zealand's Kermadec Islands to the southeast, Tonga to the east, the Samoas and France's Wallis and Futuna to the northeast, Tuvalu to the north. Fiji consists of an archipelago of more than 330 islands—of which 110 are permanently inhabited—and more than 500 islets, amounting to a total land area of about 18,300 square kilometres; the most outlying island is Ono-i-Lau. The two major islands, Viti Levu and Vanua Levu, account for 87% of the total population of 898,760; the capital, Suva, on Viti Levu, serves as the country's principal cruise-ship port. About three-quarters of Fijians live on Viti Levu's coasts, either in Suva or in smaller urban centres such as Nadi—where tourism is the major local industry—or Lautoka, where the sugar-cane industry is paramount.
Due to its terrain, the interior of Viti Levu is sparsely inhabited. The majority of Fiji's islands formed through volcanic activity starting around 150 million years ago; some geothermal activity still occurs today, on the islands of Vanua Taveuni. The geothermal systems on Viti Levu are non-volcanic in origin, with low-temperature surface discharges. Sabeto Hot Springs near Nadi is a good example. Humans have lived in Fiji since the second millennium BC—first Austronesians and Melanesians, with some Polynesian influences. Europeans visited Fiji from the 17th century onwards, after a brief period as an independent kingdom, the British established the Colony of Fiji in 1874. Fiji operated as a Crown colony until 1970. A military government declared a Republic in 1987 following a series of coups d'état. In a coup in 2006, Commodore Frank Bainimarama seized power; when the High Court ruled the military leadership unlawful in 2009, President Ratu Josefa Iloilo, whom the military had retained as the nominal Head of State, formally abrogated the 1997 Constitution and re-appointed Bainimarama as interim Prime Minister.
In 2009, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau succeeded Iloilo as President. After years of delays, a democratic election took place on 17 September 2014. Bainimarama's FijiFirst party won 59.2% of the vote, international observers deemed the election credible. Fiji has one of the most developed economies in the Pacific thanks to its abundant forest and fish resources, its currency is the Fijian dollar, its main sources of foreign exchange are its tourist industry, remittances from Fijians working, bottled water exports. The Ministry of Local Government and Urban Development supervises Fiji's local government, which takes the form of city and town councils. Fiji's main island is known as Viti Levu and it is from this that the name "Fiji" is derived, though the common English pronunciation is based on that of their island neighbours in Tonga, its emergence can be described as follows: Fijians first impressed themselves on European consciousness through the writings of the members of the expeditions of Cook who met them in Tonga.
They were described as formidable warriors and ferocious cannibals, builders of the finest vessels in the Pacific, but not great sailors. They inspired awe amongst the Tongans, all their Manufactures bark cloth and clubs, were valued and much in demand, they called their home Viti, but the Tongans called it Fisi, it was by this foreign pronunciation, first promulgated by Captain James Cook, that these islands are now known. "Feejee", the Anglicised spelling of the Tongan pronunciation, was used in accounts and other writings until the late 19th century, by missionaries and other travellers visiting Fiji. Located in the central Pacific Ocean, Fiji's geography has made it both a destination and a crossroads for migrations for many centuries. According to oral tradition, the indigenous Fijians of today are descendants of the chief Lutunasobasoba and those who arrived with him on the Kaunitoni canoe. Landing at what is now Vuda, the settlers moved inland to the Nakauvadra mountains. Though this oral tradition has not been independently substantiated, the Fijian government promotes it, many tribes today claim to be descended from the children of Lutunasobasoba.
Pottery art from Fijian towns shows that Fiji was settled by Austronesian peoples before or around 3500 to 1000 BC, with Melanesians following around a thousand years although the question of Pacific migration still lingers. It is believed that the Lapita people or the ancestors of the Polynesians settled the islands first but not much is known of what became of them after the Melanesians arrived. Archeological evidence shows signs of settlement on Moturiki Island from 600 BC and as far back as 900 BC. Aspects of Fijian culture are similar to the Melanesian culture of the western Pacific but have a stronger connection to the older Polynesian cultures. Trade between Fiji and neighbouring archipelagos long before European contact is testified by the canoes made from native Fijian trees found in Tonga and Tongan words being part of the language of the Lau group of islands. Pots made in Fiji have been found in Samoa and the Marquesas Islands. In the 10th century, the Tu'i Tonga Empire was established in Tonga, Fiji came within its sphere of influence.
The Tongan influence brought Polynesian cu