7 Dec 2006

Laisenia Qarase ministers refuse to resign

9:59 am on 7 December 2006

Cabinet ministers in Fiji's Qarase government, which has been sidelined by the military, are refusing to resign despite pressure from the army.

The Labour Party minister, Krishna Datt, says Mr Qarase is still the prime minister and they will wait for common sense to prevail.

Another Labour Party minister, Udit Narayan, is asking who the military commander is to ask him to resign.

Mr Narayan says he was appointed by President Iloilo and elected by the people, not by the military.

The minister for public utilities, Robin Irwin, says since the military takeover is illegal and unconstitutional, he will not resign.

The minister for multi-ethnic affairs, Ratu Meli Saukuru, says he will only resign if asked by President Iloilo or Mr Qarase.

The minister of state for housing, Adi Asenaca Caucau, says the people put her in office in a landslide victory, not the army, Prime Minister Qarase is still her boss and she does no support any illegal takeover.

Adi Asenaca says she is still exercising her ministerial duties from an undisclosed destination.