12 Feb 2010

Fiji's interim PM is sending mixed messages says academic

9:06 am on 12 February 2010

An academic says Fiji's interim prime minister Frank Bainimarama has been sending out mixed messages about his political future.

There have been media reports that Commodore Bainimarama has announced he'll retire in 2014 while visiting a village in Ra.

He seized power in the 2006 coup and has set 2014 as a date to hold elections.

The Permanent Secretary for Information, Lieutenant Colonel Neumi Leweni, is denying these reports, but his permanent secretary, says that that was the commodore's plan all along.

Australia's National University's, Jonathan Fraenkel, says a few weeks ago the Commodore said the military intended to intervene beyond the elections in 2014.

He says there seem to be many changes of perspective around the issue.

"Perhaps the different messages that we keep getting in these meetings Bainimarama organises around the country are a sign of the fact that they are having to come to grips with what are they all about, what are they doing, what do they really intend for the future in Fiji."

Jonathan Fraenkel.