25 Mar 2003

Fiji's Matanitu Vanua party says its a long term supporter of the government coaliton

4:43 pm on 25 March 2003

Fiji's pro-coup Conservative Alliance Matanitu Vanua party says its coalition with the ruling SDL party will not be affected by the arrest of the deputy Speaker of Parliament, Ratu Rakuita Vakalalabure, on serious coup related charges.

Ratu Rakuita, an MP of the Conservative Alliance, has been charged with taking an illegal oath to commit a capital offence for being sworn in as Attorney General in George Speight's failed administration.

He has also been charged with engaging in seditious enterprise.

But the party's secretary general, Ratu Josefa Dimuri, has told Radio Fiji the arrest will not in any way affect their relationship with the SDL.

Ratu Josefa, who is himself facing a charge of conspiracy in the Labasa army mutiny, says investigations into the coup will take their own course as the government is trying to ensure justice and make way for reconciliation.