21 Sep 2005

Fiji police trying to cover up friends' roles in the coup, former convicts claim

4:03 pm on 21 September 2005

Two former Fiji coup convicts say the police are covering up on behalf of their friends, whose names have come up in coup investigations.

Viliame Savu served five months of a one year jail term for his part in the May 2000 coup, and he says police are now delaying investigations into coup suspects.

Another former coup convict, Maciu Navakasuasua, says police cut out three quarters of the pages in his witness statement because he alleges detectives wanted to omit the names of prominent people.

Mr Savu supports the stand made by Mr Navakasuasua.

"So many people who should have been investigated by the police, are still running around free, because of their standing at the moment, some of them in government, some of them are the ambassadors. This is why I think Navokasuasua has come out, because of the lack of will by the police, and those who are investigating."

The assistant police commissioner, Kemueli Bulamainavalu, says given a five-year investigation it's necessary to summarise the evidence given by witnesses.

Mr Bulamainavalu rejects suggestions his officers are seeking to delay the investigation.