In Fiji, 7 September is Constitution Day. This public holiday was instituted in 2013 to commemorate the passing of the 2013 constitution, but it was first observed in 2016.
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Fiji’s current constitution is its fourth since independence. Its passage was largely influenced by Frank Bainimarama, who had conducted a coup in 2006 and who then won the 2014 election to become president of Fiji under the terms of the 2013 constitution he helped to get passed.
There are still those who dislike the new constitution and think the country should return to the 1997 constitution which it replaced. They say that the new constitution has an unfair electoral system and does not adequately guarantee the rights of the people. Note that Constitution Day in Fiji used to be celebrated on 27 July, the date of the passage of the third, 1997, constitution.
Those who support the new constitution point out it was crafted based on input from people all over the country and say that it ended ethnic-based provisions that have no place in a true democracy. The new constitution also lowered the voting age to 18. And the document’s supporters say it improved the country’s economy as well.
Due to the constitutional conflicts within Fiji, Constitution Day is still somewhat controversial. But many who support it give patriotic speeches and hold various celebratory events every 7 September.