19 May 2004

Fiji opposition leader condemns plan for commission of inquiry into army commander

11:12 am on 19 May 2004

Fiji's opposition leader has accused the Qarase cabinet of double standards in making an immediate decision to appoint a commission of inquiry into allegations that the military commander wanted to overthrow the government.

Mick Beddoes has told the Daily Post the decision is amazing.

He says this is so because the government has not been to police to determine the validity of the allegations by suspended officers.

Yet, Mr Beddoes says, in dealing with the overthrow of an elected government in May 2000, hostage taking, riots, murders, the army mutiny, the loss of thousands of jobs and millions of dollars, the government has done virtually nothing.

This is despite documentary evidence existing in almost every media outlet in the world.

Mr Beddoes says it is of serious concern that the government has taken on board allegations by suspended officers but not given Commodore Bainimarama the courtesy of hearing his side.

He says the government has already made up its mind about the commander and is not interested in what he has to say.