Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Chief calls on interim PM to seek forgiveness

Chief calls on interim PM to seek forgiveness
VERENAISI RAICOLA, Wednesday, - October 08, 2008

INTERIM Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama needs to "get off his high horse" and reconcile with the provinces and their people, says Kadavu chief Ratu Josateki Nawalowalo.
Ratu Josateki says there is no other way to resolve the crisis caused by the events of December 5, 2006.
"It's that simple -- the interim Government needs to seek forgiveness and this must start with Commodore Bainimarama who needs to come down from his high horse and make the commitment," Ratu Josateki said.
He was preparing a paper yesterday for the NCBBF secretariat, which suggests the need for the interim Prime Minister to initiate reconciliation because all other initiatives were doomed.
Ratu Josateki said the churches could help the processes and the chiefs could facilitate it.
"The Taukei can reconcile -- that is possible because there are traditional mechanisms available," he said. "We must learn from our past experiences and forgive and forget before moving on."
Ratu Josateki said it was obvious from the poor turnout at the charter reconciliation drives that the initiative was not accepted and that the rejection of the new look GCC was also a problem.
"We can see the implication of unforgiveness is dangerous, we need to learn from countries that have moved on.
"Reconciliation is a two way thing. The charter is not accepted by the people because there is a missing dimension.
"Everyone is fighting and there is no consensus."
Ousted Prime Minister Laisenia Qarase said he had long forgiven Commodore Bainimarama and that the way out was through political dialogue.
"With Fijians there is always the element of forgiveness but we need to go to an election first," Mr Qarase said. "I have forgiven Bainimarama but it does not mean I support his actions."
Burebasaga Confederacy head Ro Teimumu Kepa said Commodore Bainimarama was the one calling the shots and must do something.
"There is no point approaching the provinces for forgiveness - what needs to be done is for him to take Fiji to elections," she said.
Ro Teimumu said the reflection in the charter reception must indicate to the regime that the people have rejected it.
She suggested the military form a political party and use the charter as its manifesto.
Ro Teimumu said asking Commodore Bainimarama to reconcile was far fetched.
Tui Cakau Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu said the call from Ratu Josateki was interesting.
"It is a good idea and an interesting one too but we have to see how it goes because reconciliation has to be a commitment made in the open," he said.

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