12 May 2003

Fiji government figures to appear in court together on coup related charges

7:03 am on 12 May 2003

Three key members of the Fiji government will appear in court together early next month on serious coup related charges.

They are the vice president, Ratu Jope Seniloli, the deputy speaker of parliament, Ratu Rakuita Vakalalabure and the sport minister, Isireli Leweniqila.

All three face charges of taking unlawful oaths to commit a capital offence and engaging in a seditious enterprise for being sworn in as members of George Speight's failed administration.

Three other accused will also appear with them faced with the same charges for being part of the failed administration.

They include a former army officer, Lieutenant Colonel, Viliame Volavola, a former MP, Peceli Rinakama and the jailed nationalist, Viliame Savu, who is already serving a sentence for having prior knowledge of the coup and failing to inform the authorities.

Police have confirmed that more key players in the coup are likely to be charged as investigations intensify.

The Assitant Police Commissioner, Emosi Vunisa, says more people are now coming forward with information that, until recently, had been hard to secure.