21 Jun 2005

Fiji coup front man will not seek amnesty even if Reconciliation Bill is passed

10:25 am on 21 June 2005

Fiji's attorney general says the coup front man, George Speight, will not seek amnesty as provided for in the government's Reconciliation and Unity Bill.

The Fiji Sun quotes Qoriniasi Bale as saying that Speight had taken a firm stand on the matter well before the Bill was tabled in parliament.

Mr Bale says despite numerous requests from his supporters for his release under a Compulsory Supervision Order, Speight had confirmed that he would like to serve his term in prison.

He says Speight had taken a stand during his trial not to speak and he has maintained that.

Speight's brother, the minister for lands Samisoni Tikonisau, who has repeatedly said that they would seek the coup front man's release through legal means, has not commented on Mr Bale's statement.

The Reconciliation and Unity Bill will set up a Commission to fast track amnesty for coup convicts like Speight, erase their criminal records, give immunity to those not yet prosecuted and ask the courts to suspend proceedings against those facing charges.