19 Feb 2009

Fiji Government tells police chief to watch his language when disciplining staff

7:13 pm on 19 February 2009

The interim Defence Minister in Fiji says he is satisfied with the Police Commissioner's justification of his controversial use of words in a lecture to his staff.

There have been calls within the community for the Commissioner, Esala Teleni to be removed, after making statements referring to staff being cowards, disloyal officers and backstabbers.

Interim Defence Minister Ratu Epeli Ganilau says he has met with Mr Teleni to discuss the matter and says he is satisfied with Mr Teleni's explanation that his choice of words was in the best interest of his staff.

"It was taken out of context and I think his words were misconstrued. And I also say in the discipline force these are the kind of words that one hears all the time. If you want to get your message across, then more often than not hard words are put in."

Ratu Epeli Ganilau says while Mr Teleni will not be punished for his statements, he hopes he will be more careful with conveying his messages in the future.