29 Oct 2004

Profuse apology offered by Fiji soldier after pleading guilty to mutiny

4:16 pm on 29 October 2004

One of the Fiji soldiers who has pleaded guilty to mutiny for his role in the Speight coup has issued a profuse apology to its victims.

In mitigation for his actions, Warrant Officer Feskatoa Ravai has apologised and sought forgiveness from the deposed coalition government, the ousted prime minister Mahendra Chaudhry, and the family of the president driven from office, the late Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara.

Warrant Officer Ravai has also sought forgiveness from the military commander, Commodore Bainimarama, for his actions in disobeying lawful orders and the other officers, men and their families who were affected.

He then went on to apologise to President Iloilo, both houses of parliament, NGOs, the private sector, the diplomatic corps and all the people of Fiji.

Warrant Officer Ravai said he was deeply sorry for his actions and asked the court martial for a lenient sentence as a father and the sole breadwinner in a family from whom he had been separated for four years.

The 29 soldiers who have pleaded guilty to mutiny in return for having the other charges of misprision of treason and wrongful confinement of the Chaudhry government dropped will be sentenced after their mitigation is complete.