8 May 2006

Two election officials in Fiji before the courts - one facing a murder charge

8:30 pm on 8 May 2006

Two officials engaged in the Fiji general election now under way have run into serious trouble with the law.

The Fiji Sun reports that the assistant returning officer at Nadi, Asenaca Mara, appeared at a special sitting of the Nadi magistrate's court at the weekend.

She has been charged with stealing over 3,600 US dollars from the state which was to be used for election purposes in her job as the assistant district officer Nadi.

Prosecutors are quoted as saying Ms Mara will have to be bailed to carry out her election duties as an assistant returning officer.

Meanwhile, Radio Fiji reports that police have charged another election official, 23 year old Kelepi Nabutu, with murder after discovery of the body of a male Air Pacific flight attendant at the weekend.

Kelepi Nabutu appeared in the Nadi magistrate's court today and has been remanded in custody.