Minister for Home Affairs Pio Tikoduadua

The Fiji Government will undertake the review of the National Security and Defence policy.

The review is envisaged to be a holistic assessment – encompassing Fiji’s military capabilities but also the broader dimensions.

Speaking in Parliament, Minister for Home Affairs Pio Tikoduadua said the review will include Fiji’s economic security, cybersecurity, environmental security, and human security, with a particular emphasis on alleviating poverty as a means to enhance national stability.

Tikoduadua said that the comprehensive review will enable the Government to identify critical gaps, align our strategies with best practices globally, and tailor our approach to the unique aspirations of society.

He said this will serve as a blueprint for transforming our security and defence sectors into agile, forward-looking entities capable of not only deterring threats but also contributing to the holistic well-being of Fiji.

“We understand that a nation’s strength is not solely measured by its military prowess but by the resilience and prosperity of its people.

Therefore, the National Security and Defence Review will also explore mechanisms to strengthen social safety nets, promote sustainable development, and ensure that every Fijian has the opportunity to contribute to and benefit from our nation’s growth.” He said.

Tikoduadua said that the task ahead is complex and demands a collaborative approach and that the Government will engage with a broad range of stakeholders, including community leaders, international partners, and experts across various fields, to ensure that the review is comprehensive, inclusive, and aligned with Fiji’s national values and goals.

He said it is also an opportunity to redefine security in a manner that resonates with the need of our time and reflects our commitment to the well-being of all Fijians.

The final report is expected to be tabled to the Government in August this year and subsequently to Parliament.

Meanwhile, the Minister for Home Affairs Pio Tikoduadua says if the previous administration wants to be credited for the good and sweet fruits of the seeds they sowed, they must also accept responsibility for the bad and rotten fruits as well.

Tikoduadua said there are fruits from seeds the previous government planted that Fiji is contending with today, namely drugs, police brutality, unprofessionalism, and inefficient administrative processes are all that he has to deal with now.

Tikoduadua said this will all change under his leadership.

He said the challenges faced today from transnational crime and drug trafficking to the threats posed by climate change and natural disasters, demands a police force that is not only robust but also adaptable and equipped with contemporary capabilities.

He said the security landscape has evolved dramatically, and so must our response to these challenges.

“I hold myself accountable for the current law and order situation in Fiji, much of which has been inherited from decisions made in the past,” Tikoduadua said.

However, the Minister said it is our duty, as stewards of this nation, to look beyond the vestiges of the past and forge a path towards a future where our security apparatus is capable, resilient, and responsive to the needs of our time.

“The battle against drugs and transnational crime also underscores the need for regional international cooperation. In a world where threats are increasingly transnational, our security strategies must also be borderless.”

“We will continue to strengthen our ties with neighbouring countries, international organisations, and allies to combat these global challenges together,” Tikoduadua said.