Fiji's acting Prime Minister Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has defended himself against accusations of racism following an outcry about his comments and gestures in parliament.
The opposition whip Ratu Isoa Tikoca said Mr Sayed-Khaiyum's ape-like gesture was racist towards i-Taukei.
In a statement Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said he was mimicking Darth Vadar from the Star Wars movie because of the rumbling and menacing tone of Ratu Isoa's interjections.
Mr Sayed-Khaiyum says he has fought racism his entire life and the attacks were unjustified, cheap political shots.
He described Mr Sayed-Khaiyum's explanation as "fluffy" and says there was nothing light-hearted about his antics.
At the weekend, the Fiji government issued photographs of Mr Sayed-Khaiyum interacting with i Taukei market workers.
The government said the visit to Ba was an opportunity for people to get close and personal with Mr Sayed-Khaiyum as he inspected construction of the town's new market place.