29 Jan 2004

Bainimarama reappointed to head the Fiji military

8:38 pm on 29 January 2004

Fiji's military commander, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, has been re-appointed to his post for another term.

President Iloilo made the appointment following advice from the Minister from Home Affairs, Joketani Cokanasiga, after he had consulted the National Security Council and its chairman, Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase.

It comes after prolonged public acrimony between the military, which wanted Commodore Bainimarama to stay on after the expiry of his current term, and officials who wanted him removed.

A government statement says the terms and conditions of the appointment will be discussed between Commodore Bainimarama and other parties.

This has led people to believe that Commodore Bainimarama had rejected the conditions being imposed on him earlier which included a three year term and six monthly performance reviews.

The re-appointment has ended months of uncertainty over the future course of coup and mutiny investigations, with Commodore Bainimarama determined to press ahead with both.