15 Mar 2003

Fiji Peacekeepers Assn to form political party

10:03 am on 15 March 2003

The Fiji Peacekeepers Association, which is in conflict with the government over what it claims are unpaid allowances amounting to 200 million US dollars, is forming a political party.

In a statement, the association says since 1978 when Fiji troops went on peacekeeping duties to the Middle East, the Mara, Rabuka and now the Qarase government have been illegally pocketing soldier's pay and allowances.

It says the current government's reconciliation efforts are not genuine, and the law and order situation so bad that the Indo-Fijian community is living in fear and leaving by the thousands.

The Peacekeepers Association says with its twelve thousand members and their dependents nationwide, it has a solid platform to fight the next general election.