30 Nov 2004

Fiji's jailed deputy speaker Vakalalabure expected to lose seat on Friday

7:28 pm on 30 November 2004

Fiji's jailed deputy speaker of parliament, Ratu Rakuita Vakalalabure, is expected to lose his parliamentary seat on Friday.

Vakalalabure is serving a 6-year jail sentence for taking an illegal oath to become the purported attorney general in George Speight's failed administration during the coup.

Under Fiji's laws, any MP who misses two consecutive sessions of parliament automatically loses his seat.

When the current session of parliament ends on Friday, Vakalalabure will already have missed two sessions since he was jailed in early August.

The secretary general to parliament, Mary Chapman, says the speaker, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, is expected to hand down his ruling on Friday.

Meanwhile, the attorney general, Qoriniasi Bale, has told Radio Legend that he has not received any application from Vakalalabure to be released from Suva Prison under a Compulsory Supervision Order.

Former vice president Seniloli, who was jailed with Vakalalabure for taking an illegal oath to become the usurper president during the coup, was released under such an order by Mr Bale last Friday.