Fiji: Political Parties Material

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Manifestos, speeches, posters, constitutions, leaflets, newspapers, convention reports and miscellaneous election materials issued by the Alliance Party, the Fiji Labour Party, the Federation Party and the National Federation Party.

Administrative / Biographical History

Fiji became independent in October 1970, adopting a constitution which in practice involved a compromise between the principles of parliamentary democracy and the racial divisions within the country. This constitution (which guaranteed the minority Fijian population a majority of seats) kept the Alliance Party in power for seventeen years, until the Indian-dominated National Federation Party joined in coalition with the new Labour Party and won the 1987 elections. An army coup followed which restored control to the leaders of the indigenous population and set the tone for politics up to the present day, with the native Fijians attempting through constitutional changes and further coups to prevent the assertion of majority rule. The material in this collection deals mainly with the electoral struggles prior to 1987, the main issues being race, the constitution and the labour movement.

Arrangement

Alphabetically by party, and then in rough chronological order.

Conditions Governing Access

Open to all for research purposes; access is free for anyone in higher education.

Acquisition Information

Institute of Commonwealth Studies

Note

The Political Archives Project was a 2.5 year project to catalogue political archive material held in the libraries of the Institute of Commonwealth Studies and the Institute for the Study of the Americas to the University and present it as a cohesive virtual collection. The project was successfully completed in July 2005. Descriptions of all the documents may be found by searching the library catalogue at http://catalogue.ulrls.lon.ac.uk/, or via the Political Archives website: http://polarch.sas.ac.uk

Other Finding Aids

Records at item level on library catalogue (SASCAT)

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Daniel Millum, Political Archives Project Officer at the Institutes of Commonwealth and Latin American Studies.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies can usually be obtained - apply to library staff.

Custodial History

The ICS political parties collection was begun in 1960-1961, with special emphasis being placed on primary material such as party constitutions, policy statements, convention reports and election manifestos. Since then, the main method of gathering material has been to appeal directly to political parties throughout the Commonwealth, though contributions from Institute members and staff following visits to relevant countries have been significant. More recently material has been collected by means of downloading documents from the websites of the major parties.

Accruals

Further accruals are expected, some in electronic form.

Related Material

See also Political Party, Trades Unions and Pressure Group Materials for other Commonwealth countries and related material in the library's main classified sequence, all held at the ICS.

Geographical Names