12 Jan 2006

Fiji's New Nationalists say PM should resign

8:23 am on 12 January 2006

Fiji's New Nationalist Party says the prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, should resign because the future of indigenous Fijians is at stake under his government.

The party president, Saula Telawa, has told the Fiji Sun the recent move by the government to equip the police with firearms is a dangerous precedent which could lead to more bloodshed if it confronts the military.

Mr Telawa says Fijians must learn from past regional insecurity when the indigenous people of Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands used arms against their own people.

He says it will be a very, very sad day if it happens in Fiji.

Mr Telawa has also warned the police commissioner, Andrew Hughes, that as a foreigner he should not interfere in the impasse between the government and the military.

He says Mr Hughes should not allow the government to make use of him by putting the lives of Fijian people at risk.

On the government's inability to have amendments to land lease laws passed in the December sitting of parliament, Mr Telawa says Mr Qarase is a failure and should resign as should his government.

The New Nationalist Party president claims to have inherited the mantle of the late Sakeasi Butadroka, the extreme nationalist who sought the expulsion of all ethnic Indians from Fiji.