11 Nov 2006

Fiji's GCC creates subcommittee to mediate in impasse

7:03 am on 11 November 2006

Fiji's Great Council of Chiefs has set up a sub-committee to mediate in the stand-off between the military and the Qarase government.

The sub-committee will comprise the chairman of the Great Council, Ratu Ovini Bokini, and a representative each from the three traditional Fijian confederacies.

They will report back on their efforts to the next meeting of the Council in mid December.

The chiefs rejected Commodore's Bainimarama's request to stay neutral in the impasse and let the military and the government solve their problems.

Instead, they reaffirmed their support for the legally elected government, upheld the role of parliament in the law making process, and backed the rule of law, democracy and customary laws.

In their meeting with Commodore Bainimarama yesterday, the chiefs also received an assurance that the military would not stage a coup or force the prime minister to resign.