Thursday, March 01, 2007

Stand Up Please Ratu Epeli & Ratu Epeli

If the current illegal regime in Fiji think the people of Fiji will not rise up against the abuse of human rights and trampling of rights by the Military, they have another thing thing coming! Fijians harbour grudge and never forget those who perform misdeeds such as the torture and even murder of their loved ones. Just read the letters to Fiji Times editor below to get a sense of the bubbling surge of anger at the Military and those in the illegal regime who, by being part of it, are equally tainted in not even voicing any opposition to the illegal and cowardly acts.

Of note in the current regime are the two chiefs, Ratu Epeli Ganilau and Ratu Epeli Nailatikau. No word has been uttered by these two chiefs against the thuggery and brutality being dished out indiscriminately by the Military. Their resounding silence is confirmation to Fiji citizens and indigenous Fijians in particular, of their subservient position and by implication, endorsement of those cowardly acts. They clearly have a choice to make, and soon, to redeem their ever-downward sliding reputation, status and place in the eyes of Fijians. My plea to them is this:

"Please stand up to the intimidating thuggery of the Fiji Military and correct the ship of State so that you could both reclaim loss of credibility and status in the eyes of Fiji citizens and Fijians in particular".

Letters to Editor - Fijitimes Voice of the People

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Bloodless coup

I AM saddened to read how the military is treating people.

I think the soldiers are starting to lose their grip on what was believed to be a quiet and peaceful coup.

The bloodless coup is now turning bloody.

All I can see now is that we are heading in the same direction as Nigeria.

Soon our young men and women will wish to join the military so that they can get their hands on the Prime Minister's post.

When that happens, it will be "out with the old, in with the new".

Asaeli Sinusetaki

Stop it

I would like to remind interim Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama that his soldiers are treating Fijians like animals.

If the army cannot provide evidence of corruption, at least they should stop mistreating people.

If the soldiers have nothing to do, it is better to send them to their villages to go and farm their land rather than wasting public funds and resulting in the loss of innocent lives.

The soldiers, most of whom are Fijians, should stop bullying defenceless citizens including Fijians.

Sairusi Taganeniwai
New Zealand

Army brutality

THE death of a young man in the hands of those who are supposed to be the protector of civilians has created a lot of agony, pain, distress, misery and woe among our people.

What is happening in Fiji will breed bitterness and hatred among our people.

It will be hard for indigenous Fijians and ordinary citizens to forget.

However, it is for us to learn that running the government through the barrel of the gun and by force will not solve the problem.

Why should ordinary and innocent people be victims of the so-called clean-up campaign?

I beg our soldiers and police officers not to take the law into their own hands.

Let the magistrate and judge do their part.

Where else will the people go to lodge their complaint when the military, police and Fiji Human Rights Commission see citizens of this country as their enemies? People will come and go but the law remains.

The law is a written word and is like a two-edged sword which cuts both sides. If you do not handle it properly you can hurt yourself.

Pate Nunu

Second death

HOW many innocent civilians have to die before the military puts a stop to human rights abuse?

First, it was a sole breadwinner and family man of Tailevu. Now it is one of our sons from Lomaiviti.

It would have been accepted if Fiji was at war and our sons were killed by friendly fire.

But the stark reality is that we are not at war and the two lives lost posed no threat whatsoever to national security.

We welcome the clean-up campaign and where the Interim Government is moving the nation.

But we would rather live under a corrupt government where human rights and the lives of the innocent are protected.

If the Interim Prime Minister cannot put a stop to the deaths of innocent people then he should consider the whole clean-up campaign a failure and should return us to where we were.

Savenaca Vaka

Merciless killings

WHAT better way to label those responsible for taking away Rabaka's life than a bunch of cold-blooded murderers, merciless killers, thick-headed numbskulls who are just waiting for any wrong move (wrong move, according to them) to pounce on poor souls.

They are all hell-bound and prison-bound too.

I ask the Lord to comfort Rabaka's family during these trying times.

Derrick Thomas

Highest degree

VOREQE Bainimarama has to be investigated irrespective of whether he is the military commander or Interim Prime Minister.

If he's not investigated, then it is "corruption" in the highest degree.

I thought the coup was for the cleaning up of corruption but now it seems otherwise.

Sakiusa Sakiti

Untimely death

THE sad and untimely death of Sakiusa Rabaka at the hands of soldiers is a reflection of the state of affairs in Fiji.

The military hierarchy has allowed its rank and file to become judge and jury in petty cases that would normally fall within the domain of the Fiji police.

We've seen a steady decline in professional law enforcement procedures on the part of the military and complicity, by an apparent acquiescence, on the part the Fiji police.

We've had people bashed-up for playing loud music, we've had a man from Tailevu die while in military custody because of some "menial" dispute and we've had hundreds of others subjected to human degradation just because they've exercised their God-given right to express their own opinion.

If allowed to go unchecked, more of our people will die at the hands of soldiers who are fast becoming nothing more than ordinary thugs.

And, in a disciplined force, rank and file is only as good as the commanders.

I recall military spokesman Major Neumi Leweni warning the media against describing military attacks on individuals as torture, suggesting instead that the word relates to the more gruesome acts of electric shocks, fingernail removal, etc.

With further education, Major Leweni might learn that there are different forms of torture, including the mental type that the Fiji military is using to its maximum.

But, there is probably no worse form of torture than having to bear the loss of a loved one at the hands of thugs who are likely to go unpunished because they have been granted immunity and may not need to appear before a court of law.

When will this madness, in the name of a clean-up campaign end?

I'd like to acknowledge the humility exercised by Bernadette Rounds-Ganilau in visiting Mr Rabaka while he was in hospital.

While we may be related, I don't know her personally.

However, I'd also like to suggest to her that she consider using her position and persona to make a meaningful statement by resigning from the interim administration in disgust over Mr Rabaka's death.

I suggest, further, that to not do so is to get tarred with the same brush of thuggery.

Charles Rounds

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