20 May 2004

Widen Bainimarama inquiry, says Fiji forum

10:25 am on 20 May 2004

The Citizens Constitutional Forum in Fiji is concerned the scope of an inquiry into allegations against the army commander may be too narrow.

The CCF executive director, the Reverend Aquila Yabaki is asking the Fiji government to consult the opposition leader, Mick Beddoes, and the Labour Party, before drawing up the terms of reference of the inquiry.

In a letter to the prime minister, the Reverend Yabaki says they may not include investigations into the role of some cabinet ministers and senior public servants who have caused the split between the government and the military commander.

He says the terms of reference should be agreed to, by the political leaders of the parliamentary parties because it's a matter of public interest, affecting the security of the nation.

The leader of the National Federation Party, Prem Singh, says the inquiry should focus not only on Commodore Bainimarama but on all aspects of the military's action from the day of the coup.

Mr Singh says this should include the transfer of weapons from the army camp to parliament, the removal of President Mara, and the abrogation of the constitution because people have a right to know what happened at the height of the crisis.