14 Sep 2007

Fiji interim Prime Minister seeks update on violent crime problems

10:21 am on 14 September 2007

Fiji interim prime minister is seeking an urgent briefing from the police commissioner on the increasing levels of violent crime in the country.

Commodore Bainimarama says this is due to his concern about reports of home invasions, violent robberies, attacks on taxi drivers, sacrilege and the perceived increase in crime following the withdrawal of soldiers from roadside checkpoints.

Commodore Bainimarama says good law and order is vital to give confidence to people, improve their sense of security and wellbeing, and to promote much needed investment.

He says the interim government has received many calls asking for the return of soldiers to roadside checkpoints.

While opponents of the interim administration and foreign governments criticised the re-imposition of the Public Emergency Regulations last week, many organisations in Fiji including the Fiji Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Hindu religious groups welcomed it.

Commodore Bainimarama says as the minister for home affairs he is taking a lot of interest in the growing crime problem and has called for new ways of tackling it.

He says there is an urgent need to look into how police can be assisted to improve their performance in fighting crime.