30 Sep 2003

Former Fiji coup leader says reconciliation needs to be the focus

5:01 pm on 30 September 2003

The former coup leader and prime minister of Fiji, Sitiveni Rabuka, says there needs to be greater efforts made at reconciliation.

He says he's not calling for deposed PM, Mahendra Chaudhry, to be restored to office, as had been earlier reported, but he should have been immediately after the coup.

However, Mr Rabuka says its now time to move on.

"What we are proposing as a party is to at least first of all, instil into the people of Fiji, of all races, that there is a need for us to acknowledge that there was a lot of wrong committed and there were lots of victims on both sides of the racial equation in Fiji, which demands a serious look at the need for reconciliation."

Mr Rabuka says the Great Council of Chiefs should take the initiative in terms of reconciliation.

And, he says there should be efforts made towards compensation for the MPs and senators whose careers were affected by the coup.