24 Aug 2005

Fiji military speaks out against fearmongering by politicians

3:40 pm on 24 August 2005

Fiji's military commander has called on government senator Mohammed Apisai Tora and other politicians not to force people to vote out of fear in the 2006 general elections.

Mr Tora is the leader the ultra-nationalist Taukei Movement who led the agitation preceding the 1987 and 2000 coups.

Commodore Frank Bainimarama has told Radio Legend it is sad to hear people like Mr Tora and other politicians making public comments that there will definitely be instability if Fijian parties do not win the election.

Commodore Bainimarama says they have come up with the same threats that politicians always come up with before elections.

He says these politicians are forcing people to vote out of fear and such statements should be condemned now.

Commodore Bainimarama has also criticised Mr Tora's comments in Senate yesterday that the Reconciliation and Unity Bill will guarantee indigenous Fijian rights and power.

He has highlighted an incident in 2000 when Mr Tora had asked the military to remove the newly installed President Iloilo from office.

Commodore Bainimarama says this confirms that the Bill has nothing to do with reconciliation and everything to do with George Speight's agenda in staging the coup.