1 May 2007

Blame Rabuka for Fiji's coup culture - says Col Driti

9:05 am on 1 May 2007

A senior Fiji military officer has blamed the former prime minister and leader of the first two military coups in 1987, Sitiveni Rabuka, for the coup culture in the country.

The commander of the military's Land Forces, Col Pita Driti, has laid the blame on Mr Rabuka in comments made to the Fijilive news website

Col Driti says everything that has happened is because of what happened in 1987 when Mr Rabuka took over the government by staging a coup, which was far worse than what the military did last December.

Col Driti says it was Mr Rabuka who created the coup culture in Fiji and its effects are still with the country.

He says the military is only engaged in damage control from past coups.

Col Driti's comments come after Mr Rabuka criticized him in a newspaper report for damaging relations between Fiji and foreign diplomats by blaming them for allegedly trying to incite a mutiny late last year.

Col Driti says Mr Rabuka has no right to judge his actions because he is more senior than Mr Rabuka was when he carried out his coups.