15 May 2002

Former Fiji coup-maker says don't pardon George Speight

6:50 am on 15 May 2002

The former Fiji prime minister, Sitiveni Rabuka, says a pardon for coup front man, George Speight, would be a catastrophe which would pave the way for more coups.

Mr rabuka, who carried out Fiji's first two military coups in 1987, has told the Daily Post newspaper a pardon for Speight would set a dangerous precedent and lead to more political unrest.

Speaking lat night on the 15th anniversary of his first coup, Mr rabuka said he does not deserve to be punished because his coup was successful and his revolution brought changes to the system.

But, he says, Speight failed in his coup and deserves to be punished.

Mr Rabuka says Fiji will continue to face uncertainty until people change their attitude and follow the rule of law.

He says no foreign or local businessman would invest in Fiji again if Speight is released.