Qoriniasi Bale

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Qoriniasi Babitu Bale
9th Solicitor General of Fiji
In office
1979–1984
Governor General Ratu Sir Penaia Ganilau
Prime Minister Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara
Preceded by Harold Picton-Smith
Succeeded by John Richard FLower
25th Attorney General of Fiji
In office
1984–1987
Governor General Ratu Sir Penaia Ganilau
Prime Minister Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara
Preceded by Manikam V. Pillai
Succeeded by Jai Ram Reddy
34th Attorney General of Fiji
In office
2001–2006
President Ratu Josefa Iloilo
Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase
Preceded by Alipate Qetaki
Succeeded by Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum
Senator of Fiji
1st time
In office
1984–1987
Appointed by Prime Minister of Fiji
President of the Senate Wesley M. Barrett
Senator of Fiji
2nd time
In office
2001–2006
Appointed by Prime Minister of Fiji
President of the Senate Ratu Tevita Vakalalabure
Personal details
Born 1929[1]
Levukana, Vanua Balavu, Fiji
Died 21 March 2014(2014-03-21) (aged 84–85)
Sigatoka, Fiji
Political party Alliance Party Fiji
Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua

Qoriniasi Babitu Bale (1929 — 21 March 2014)[2] was a lawyer and politician who served twice as Fiji's Minister for Justice and Attorney-General, most recently from 2001 to 2006, when he was deposed in the military coup of 5 December.[2] Like many of Fiji's most influential leaders, Bale was a native of Levukana in Vanua Balavu in the Lau Islands.

Education and early career[edit]

Bale was educated at Queen Victoria School then University of Otago in New Zealand, where he graduated with a LLB degree in 1969. Upon returning to Fiji, he was appointed a Crown Counsel in the Crown Law Office, and subsequently became a Crown Prosecutor in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions in 1970. In 1975, he became Principal Legal Officer in the Crown Law Office, before being promoted to Solicitor General in 1979, a post he held until 1984. He was the first native-born Solicitor General; his predecessors had all been from the United Kingdom.

Political career[edit]

Bale had his first foray into politics in 1984, when the Governor General of Fiji appointed him to the Senate at the nomination of Prime Minister Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara. At that time the Senate consisted of 22 members, 7 of whom were nominated by the Prime Minister. He became Attorney General in the Cabinet, and later that year was also appointed to the newly created position of Minister for Justice. He retired from politics, however, following the defeat of the Alliance Party in the general election of 1987.

Following the Fiji coups of 1987, Bale went into private practice as a lawyer. He served as Legal Adviser to the Great Council of Chiefs and the Fijian Affairs Board for 18 years, and as Chairman of the Electoral Commission and the Constituency Boundaries Commission from 1990 to 1996. He was also Chairman of Ratu Sukuna Memorial School from 1988 to 1996, and Chairman of the Council of the Fiji School of Medicine for 10 years.

Following the restoration of democracy after the Fiji coup of 2000, Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase appointed Bale to the Senate in September 2001. One of the 9 out of 32 Senators chosen by the Prime Minister, he found himself holding the portfolios of Attorney-General and Minister for Justice once more.

Policies[edit]

A member of the Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua Party (SDL), he was known to have Fijian nationalist sympathies and called for substantial amendments to be made to the Constitution adopted in 1997. This Constitution, which was abrogated in the course of the 2000 coup, was subsequently reinstated in March 2001, following two court rulings.

In May and June 2005, Bale promoted the Reconciliation, Tolerance, and Unity Bill, which proposes the establishment of a Commission with the power, subject to presidential approval, to compensate victims and pardon perpetrators of crimes related to the 2000 coup.

In July 2006, Bale claimed that the Fiji Labour Party had no right to call itself the opposition and appoint shadow ministers. Bale said "as far as the Opposition goes there are only two formal Opposition members while the rest of the FLP members are government back-benchers."[3]

Legal offices
Preceded by
Harold Picton-Smith
Solicitor General of Fiji
1979-1984
Succeeded by
John Richard Flower
Preceded by
Vasagam Pillai
1st time
Attorney General of Fiji

1984-1987
Succeeded by
Jai Ram Reddy
Preceded by
Alipate Qetaki
2nd time
Attorney General of Fiji

2001-2006
Succeeded by
Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum
Political offices
Preceded by
1st time
Senator of Fiji

1984-1987
Succeeded by
Preceded by
2nd time
Senator of Fiji

2001-2006
Succeeded by

References[edit]

  1. ^ "March 21st Famous Deaths for 2014". One Day History. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 
  2. ^ a b "Former Attorney- General Qoriniasi Bale dies". Fijisun.com.fj. 2008-05-27. Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  3. ^ "Gateway to Fiji". Fijilive. 2006-07-13. Retrieved 2014-03-24. 

External links[edit]