Chief Justice Anthony Gates shall retire, ending his 11 years of service as Fiji’s highest ranking judicial officer. His retirement will take effect from 7 April 2019.
Chief Justice Anthony Gates was first appointed to the High Court of Fiji in 1999. In early 2007, he was appointed as the Acting Chief Justice, going on to receive a substantive appointment as Fiji’s Chief Justice in 2008.
As Chief Justice, His Lordship has presided over many of the highest profile and most consequential cases in Fijian history. He leaves behind an encompassing slate of judicial rulings that will serve as a guide for lawyers, judges and legal academics for generations.
“There are few more inspiring examples of professionalism and patriotism than the decades of service Chief Justice Anthony Gates has given Fiji, the Fijian people and our system of justice. His conduct throughout his tenure as Chief Justice has been exemplary,” said His Excellency President Jioji Konrote. “Among the legal fraternity, the depth of his civility, the strength of his character, along with the sharpness of his wit, are all without question. As a fierce defender of the independence of our courts, he has given confidence to our people and to the world that justice and the rule of law prevails in Fiji. On top of a legal legacy of far-reaching precedents, Justice Gates’ role in supporting our new, genuine democracy has cemented him a proud place in Fijian history. I congratulate Chief Justice Gates on his well-earned retirement.”
His Excellency the President, on the advice of the Honourable Prime Minister, has appointed the Honourable Justice Kamal Kumar as the Acting Chief Justice with effect from 8 April 2019, until such time when a substantive appointment is made. Justice Kumar has served on Fiji’s High Court since 2013. He is also the chairperson of the Human Right and Anti-Discrimination Commission.