Minister for iTaukei Affairs Ifereimi Vasu.
The sole reason for the re-establishment of the Great Council of Chiefs is to help move the i-Taukei community forward.
Minister for iTaukei Affairs Ifereimi Vasu says it will also help the i-Taukei explore and identify their resources and enable them to generate income.
Vasu says this will help the GCC remain apolitical and be the guiding light for the indigenous people of the country.
“They will liberate more and as I mentioned might be at the end we’ll ask the chiefs also to come we’ll present to them what’s their view then we’ll go back to cabinet from the recommendation of the review team. It will take time, but we’ll do it properly. Take my word, it will be a different GCC altogether.”
Vasu says the GCC will focus on ways to help landowners best utilize their resources.
“I think the way it has been set up is to look at the vanua, our culture and now we thinking of the resources that we are having now. We might have to look at ways how the chiefs can really look at the resources that we have now and turn it into business things and let move the I-Taukei and how we can contribute to the economy of the nation.”
While addressing the nation on Monday night, Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka say the government has made progress to restore the GCC.
“The Great Council of Chiefs, the institution that is still held with very high regard in Fiji. The Ministry of Itaukei Affairs is taking the lead on this front and the rebuilding of the GCC or the valenibose or meeting house is scheduled to begin in May.”
An independent team will be reviewing the GCC and all its Acts and will help the Ministry make recommendations to Cabinet for endorsement.
The first GCC meeting is scheduled for May.