28 Jan 2005

Fiji cabinet minister appears in court on coup related charges

10:50 am on 28 January 2005

A Fiji cabinet minister will appear in court today to answer to a serious coup related charge.

Simione Kaitani, the former minister of information and now minister for transport, has been charged with taking an illegal oath to commit a capital offence.

The charge relates to his being sworn in as a purported minister in George Speight's failed administration during the coup, the same offence for which the former vice president Seniloli was jailed.

Kaitani and four others, who were charged with this offence, were granted bail last month when they first appeared in court.

Two of the four, Eroni Lewagai and Lepani Tonitonivanua, appeared before the chief justice, Daniel Fatiaki, last month for breaching their bail conditions.

But Justice Fatiaki released them again under the same conditions.