3 Oct 2005

Fiji Senator supports military commander after he was criticised by Canberra

6:33 am on 3 October 2005

A senator appointed by Fiji's Great Council of Chiefs has commended the military commander for Speaking out against comments made by Australia's foreign minister, Alexander Downer.

Senator Jim Ah Koy has told the Sunday Times he supports Commodore Bainimarama for his strong words against Mr Downer.

Senator Ah Koy says Commodore Bainimarama is doing a good job, his priority is national security and that is why he is coming out strongly against the Reconciliation and Unity Bill.

Mr Downer had said the army commander had no business in politics and should stick to his job of running the military.

But Commodore Bainimarama told him the military was not involved in politics but only reacted to the consequences the Reconciliation and Unity Bill would bring which he described as a continuation of the 2000 coup.

Commodore Bainimarama told Mr Downer that Australia had never experienced a coup and did not know what Fiji's military went through