9 Aug 2004

Fiji's director of immigration is suspended,

1:04 pm on 9 August 2004

Fiji's director of immigration, Joe Browne, has been suspended, allegedly for going on an overseas trip when he was told not to.

The Daily Post newspaper says Mr Browne has confirmed his suspension but says the reasons should be sought from the Public Service Commission.

The newspaper says it is not known if the suspension has anything to do with Mr Browne being a prosecution witness in the recent coup related trial of vice president Seniloli and others who have been jailed.

Before taking the witness stand, Mr Browne had asked the court for assurances that he would not be victimised for giving evidence.

Justice Nazhat Shameem had assured him that anyone involved in victimising him would be answerable to the court.

It was earlier reported that Mr Browne was under investigation over 21 allegations against him.