22 Oct 2018

One officer fired, five suspended after prisoner beaten in Fiji

12:17 pm on 22 October 2018

A prison officer in Fiji has been fired and five others suspended after the brutal beating of a prisoner.

no caption

Photo: 123RF

The Corrections Service said the beating happened at the Suva Remand Centre on the 10th of October.

Prisoner, Sefania Turagadamudamu, was allegedly assaulted by prison guards at the Suva Remand Centre and deprived of medical attention.

FCS Commissioner, Commander Francis Kean, has confirmed that one corrections officer had been terminated and five others suspended after their internal investigations.

"The Fiji Corrections Service has zero tolerance on the assault of prisoners and strongly condemns the action of a few rogue personnel who have tarnished the good work currently being done by majority of the officers," he said.

According to The Fiji Times, Mr Turagadamudamu's father, Pelame Rokovino, found out about the incident after being alerted by his daughter of graphic pictures of his son being circulated on social media.

Mr Rokovino told the newspaper when he went to visit his son on Thursday he was denied the chance to do so by the officers present.

According to him, Mr Turagadamudamu claims he was assaulted while trying to save another prisoner who was being beaten up by several officers.

"He told me another officer then threw hot water on him during the ordeal," Mr Rokovino said.

Mr Rokovino claimed his son had not been taken to the hospital to treat his injuries since the incident and he was concerned for his welfare.

He said he wanted the "relevant authorities to do something to provide justice not only to my son, but also to other inmates as well".

However, Mr Kean said yesterday Mr Turagadamudamu was attended to by their Senior Medical Officer and has been referred to the CWM Hospital for further medical examination.

Fiji's Human Rights and Anti-Discrimination Commission director, Ashwin Raj, has confirmed the commission's private solicitor made an intervention at the courts on Friday, to bring to the court's attention the human rights breaches in relation to Mr Turagadamudamu.

The case comes only a week after a man died in Suva hospital after allegedly being beaten by police.

Get the RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs