9 Sep 2004

Fiji Chiefs' Council decides to take no action on Seniloli

6:39 am on 9 September 2004

Fiji's Great Council of Chiefs has decided to take no action on the position of jailed vice president, Ratu Jope Seniloli.

Instead, an emergency meeting of chiefs agreed to await the outcome of Seniloli's appeal against his sentence which will be heard on November the second.

The decision was taken after the attorney general, Qoriniasi Bale, briefed the chiefs, including on the possibility of legal action against them if certain options were considered.

The chiefs' meeting had been called to discuss whether Seniloli should be replaced because he is unable to perform the function of his office while in jail.

The council is the appointing authority for the president and the vice president.

Seniloli is serving a four-year prison sentence for taking an illegal oath to become the usurper president during the Speight coup while the legally appointed Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara still held the office.

Seniloli has refused to resign and continues to be paid the vice presidential salary and enjoy other benefits of office such as state housing and a vehicle.