Dominion of Fiji
|Dominion of Fiji|
"Rerevaka na Kalou ka Doka na Tui"
"Fear God and honour the Queen"
God Bless Fiji
God Save The Queen
|-||1970–1973||Robert Sidney Foster|
|-||Lower house||House of Representatives|
|Historical era||Cold War|
|-||Independence||10 October 1970|
|-||Republic proclaimed||6 October 1987|
|-||1976||18,274 km² (7,056 sq mi)|
|Density||32.2 /km² (83.3 /sq mi)|
|Density||39.1 /km² (101.4 /sq mi)|
|Today part of||Fiji|
The Dominion of Fiji, also known simply as Fiji, was a predecessor to modern-day Fiji and an independent state and that existed between October 1970 and 6 October 1987. When British rule ended in 1970, Fiji was given independence as a Dominion, in which the state existed until the coup d'état of 1987.The Republic of Fiji was proclaimed on 6 October 1987. During the Dominion period, the British monarch remained head of state of Fiji, and was represented in Fiji by a governor-general. The following governors-generals held office in Fiji during the commonwealth realm period:
- Sir Robert Sidney Foster 10 October 1970 – 13 February 1973
- Ratu Sir George Cakobau 13 February 1973 – 12 February 1983
- Ratu Sir Penaia Ganilau 12 February 1983 – 6/15 October 1987
The following held office as prime minister (and head of government) of the Dominion of Fiji during this period:
Following the election of the ethnically Indian Prime Minister Bavadra on 13 April 1987, a coup d'état under the ethnic Fijian Lieutenant Colonel Sitiveni Rabuka occurred against the government in 14 May 1987. At first, Lieutenant-Colonel Rabuka expressed loyalty to Queen Elizabeth II. However, Governor-General Ratu Sir Penaia Ganilau, in an effort to uphold Fiji's constitution, refused to swear in the new (self-appointed) government headed by Rabuka, and so Rabuka declared a republic on 6 October 1987. This was accepted by the British government on 15 October 1987, and Ganilau resigned on the same day. In a letter addressed to Queen Elizabeth II, Ganilau wrote:
"With humble duty, I wish to submit to you the following advice, acting in my capacity as your representative in Fiji. Owing to the uncertainty of the political and constitutional situation in Fiji, I have now made up my mind to request Your Majesty to relieve me of my appointment as Governor-General with immediate effect. This I do with utmost regret, but my endeavours to preserve constitutional government in Fiji have proved in vain, and I can see no alternative way forward. With deepest respect, Penaia Ganilau, Governor-General."