16 Sep 2014

Fiji police prepared for potential election unrest

8:31 pm on 16 September 2014

Fiji's Police Commissioner is taking the country's history of coups into account in planning security for Wednesday's vote.

Nearly 600 thousand people are registered to take part in the poll, which will be the first for over eight years.

More than 3 thousand police officers will be providing security and present at polling venues, but not entering polling stations unless requested.

Commissioner Ben Groenewald has already said he won't hesitate to call in the military if law and order breaks down.

"There are not any serious indications of anything that might happen. But keep in mind that in any preparation you need to have contingency plans and this is one of our contingency plans."

Members of Fiji police and military forces.

Members of Fiji police and military forces. Photo: AFP

Commissioner Groenewald says there were several reports of vandalism and banner slashing during the campaign period and one complaint from the National Federation Party that banners of an opposing party had not been removed during the 48 hour so-called blackout period when all party advertising and political reporting is banned