6 Oct 2006

Fiji army apologises for its role in the coups of 1987 and 2000

11:10 am on 6 October 2006

Fiji's military has for the first time apologised for the 1987 and 2000 coups.

The Daily Post reports that the apology was part of the military's submission opposing the Qoliqoli and Indigenous Land Claims Tribunal Bills made to the parliamentary committee hearing public views on them.

Captain Seremaia Tuiteci said the military had learnt from the dark chapters of 1987 and 2000 and was apologizing for allowing that to happen.

Captain Tuiteci said the prime minister, Laisenia Qaerase, was the main propagator and author of the new wave of ethno nationalism sweeping the country.

And he said the Qoliqoli Bill was a legal extension of that ethno-nationalism ideology that had been encouraged by the 1987 coups and fanned in 2000.

Captain Tuiteci said the military had been used in 1987 and were not going to be used again as the coups were meant for elite Fijians at the expense of those at the grass roots.