27 Aug 2007

Mutiny chief in Fiji seeks reconciliation with interim administration

6:27 am on 27 August 2007

A vice president of Fiji's SDL party, who was jailed for life for inciting the November 2000 army mutiny, is seeking reconciliation with the interim administration and the military commander.

Ratu Inoke Takiveikata has taken out a full-page newspaper advertisement two months after the Appeal Court set him free and ordered that he be retried for inciting the mutiny which cost eight lives.

Ratu Inoke says he is issuing an open invitation to all those involved in overthrowing the SDL government in December last year to take part in a national reconciliation.

He says the reconciliation would result in immunity from prosecution for all those involved in the December 5th coup.

For this to happen, Ratu Inoke says elections must be held by December next year, all constitutional offices such as that of the president, the vice president and the chief justice should be normalized, and the government should be demilitarized.

Ratu Inoke says the nation appreciates some of the noble objectives the interim regime has set out to achieve, but nothing the regime does will ever be legal and the regime cannot force its will on the people.

He says he is resorting to an open letter because all his efforts to meet with the interim government including the interim prime minister, Commodore Bainimarama, have been unsuccessful.