2 Oct 2007

Fiji Military Council says voting changes will end SDL's grip on power

10:44 am on 2 October 2007

Fiji's Military Council says it will ensure that the deposed prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, and his SDL party do not return to power as plans are now under way to scrap race based voting in Fiji.

The military spokesman, Lt Col Mosese Tikoitoga, says politicians have used the race card for years to get votes and form governments, adding that a race-based system will always bring the SDL party back.

He says this needs to change before the people of Fiji go to the polls again.

Lt Col Tikoitoga says if there are no race-based elections, there will be no race-based policies.

He says once that is put right, people like Mr Qarase will not get back into power.

The Commonwealth secretary general, Don McKinnon, says it is unacceptable that Commodore Bainimarama wants the SDL party to be banned from contesting the next elections.