2 May 2006

Failure to bring Fiji military officer to justice a threatening precedent, says military

8:19 pm on 2 May 2006

Fiji's military says the failure to bring a top military officer to justice over an alleged mutiny attempt presents a precedent that could threaten society.

The former acting land force commander, Colonel Jone Baledrokadroka, has moved to New Zealand, however Fiji's solicitor general's office says there is no extradition treaty with New Zealand to have him returned.

Fiji's military wants to court martial Col Baledrokadroka over allegations that he tried to overthrow the military commander Commodore Frank Bainimarama earlier this year.

The military spokesman, Lieutenant Colonel Orisi Rabukawaqa, says it's important for them to follow all the proper processes to bring the matter to military law.

"The fact that you're not able to exercise the due process of military law, as indicated back to members of the military and in fact members even society - that would be a threat, in terms of not being able to exercise that fully."

Fiji military spokesman Lt Col Orisi Rabukawaqa