23 May 2024

Fiji's handling of drug crisis draws harsh criticism

From , 6:00 am on 23 May 2024
Flag of Fiji on soldiers arm. Flag of Fiji on military uniforms (collage).

Photo: 123RF

A Pacific professor says the Fiji military pointing fingers at Fijian police reflects "widespread concern" over corruption within the force.

It comes after the Fiji Military Colonel Kitione Tuinaosara made damning remarks towards the government and police in response to Fiji's escalating drug crisis during a talanoa on friday where media were present.

Tuinaosara criticised the government saying "there is no strategic and operational intent from the government. That is the first sign of inaction. It's all words."

He even suggested using firearms as a deterrent, and security measure. 

Minister for Home Affairs Pio Tikoduadua released a statement calling for patience adding the government planned to roll out a national countering illicit narcotics strategy and were yet to choose a dedicated police commissioner to handle the national drug issue. 

RNZ Pacific's Eleisha Foon spoke with Adjunct Professor of Governance from the University of the South Pacific, Vijay Naidu on why he thinks guns are not the solution and his response to the military criticising the police and Fijian government.