17 Nov 2011

Former Fiji military leader says phone tapping cost jobs

5:02 pm on 17 November 2011

A former Fiji army colonel, Ratu Tevita Mara, says CEOs and people in the Fiji Government have lost their jobs as a result of phone tapping.

Ratu Tevita, who fled Fiji in May while facing sedition charges, says phone tapping and email tampering started in early 2007, under the interim prime minister, Commodore Frank Bainimarama.

Mr Mara says people who were seen as not toeing the line were targeted, as well as corporate bodies, and various agencies.

He says transcripts were presented to the military council of phone conversations where people spoke against the way the government was being run.

"Not malicous but saying how they disagreed with the Government and that's been used against them. That's had CEOs removed, it's even had people who work in Government removed."

Tevita Mara says they also read transcripts where people had criticised Commodore Bainimarama's appointment of his brother-in-law in a key military position.