4 May 2011

Driti charged with inciting Fiji mutiny

8:41 pm on 4 May 2011

A former Fiji Land Force Commander, Brigadier General Pita Driti, has appeared in court charged with inciting mutiny.

Fiji media say no details of the alleged plot have been released.

Brigadier General Driti, who has been on leave since last year, has also been charged with making a seditious comment.

The same charge has been levelled at another former top officer, Colonel Ratu Tevita Uluilakeba Mara, who also appeared in court in Suva.

The two have pleaded not guilty.

They have been ordered to surrender their passports and to reappear in court at the beginning of June.

Both were close associates of the military commander, Commodore Bainimarama, when he seized power in a coup in 2006.

When they took leave seven months ago, the Fiji regime denied there were any splits within the top hierarchy, and that assessment was last given two months ago by the Land Force Commander Colonel Mosese Tikoitoga.

Commodore Bainimarama is currently in Vietnam.