14 Dec 2006

Fiji military chief says his regime could rule for 50 years

3:36 pm on 14 December 2006

Fiji's military commander, Commodore Frank Bainimarama, says his transitional regime can rule for 50 years if the Great Council of Chiefs delays appointing a new president to swear in the proposed interim administration.

Radio Fiji reports that following last week's coup, Commodore Bainimarama is the military commander, the head of the military council and the head of state.

He says if the Great Council decides to hold off appointing a new president, the transitional regime can rule for up to 50 years.

The Great Council is scheduled to meet in Suva for two days next week.

Commodore Bainimarama hopes the chiefs will appoint a new president who would then appoint the military regime's new cabinet.

He has also told the Great Council that if they are thinking of bringing back the Qarase government, they have another thing coming.

Meanwhile, troops today carried out raids on the office of the Fijian Affairs Board whose chief executive, Adi Litia Qionibaravi, was dismissed yesterday.

The Fijian Affairs Board is responsible for convening meetings of the Great Council of Chiefs.

Commodore Bainimarama confirmed the raid and said it was part of Adi Litia's removal and cleaning up of the government.