Friday, February 26, 2010

Military Intelligence Ignored Rules

Fiji Broadcasting Corporation, February 26, 2010

Work undertaken by officers of the Military Intelligence Unit, did not have any legal mandate, nor did officers follow universally accepted intelligence gathering rules and guidelines, the Suva High Court has heard.

Former Fiji Intelligence Service director Colonel Metuisela Mua made the statement while testifying in the trial of eight men accused of plotting to kill the Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama in 2007.

Mua, who is one of the accused, said the information gathered by military intelligence officer Peniasi Kuli was not independently verified and neither was there any proper analysis of his information.

Mua says the notes of the 14 meetings Kuli allegedly had with former CRW soldiers were not properly graded and neither was there any continuity of notes between meetings.

He says the military intelligence report on the movements of the alleged assassins was full of inconsistencies, prepared in retrospect, full of fabrication and indicated that someone was lying somewhere.

Mua says the covert operation undertaken by Major Isireli Narawa to meet with Ratu Inoke Takiveikata at the Sofitel Hotel in Nadi was flawed.

He says Major Narawa didn’t provide a cover for himself and for his organization and that since he was the director and an analyst of military intelligence, he shouldn’t have been going undercover.

Apart from this Mua said there was nothing in the Military Act or any other laws of Fiji that allows the Military to carry out intelligence work.

He said Police were the only organization allowed to carry out intelligence work under the Police Act and through a Cabinet Charter.

Under cross examination, Mua denied that he briefed the former CRW soldiers at Ballu Khan’s house in 2007 and also denied that he met Kuli to discuss issues concerning the alleged plot.

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