Postdate: 30/ 01/ 2008
Re: CCF stand
In reply to a letter from Arvind Nadan, Suva (FT, 28/01/2008) regarding ‘’CF stand’, I wish to point out the reason for the statement that “as far as credibility goes, the CCF is of the view, that the SDL government was as much racked with lack of credibility as the interim government”.
Going back into Fiji’s history, the SDL party came into power after the 2000 coup of George Speight. The SDL publicly stated its support for the cause of the 2000 coup. SDL went on to form a coalition government with the Conservative Alliance Matanitu Vanua (CAMV) Party, which essentially had members who had been part of, or supported the 2000 coup, including George Speight himself, who stood in the 2001 elections as a CAMV party candidate.
The SDL then went on to appoint known 2000 coup supporters to ministerial portfolios and prominent positions. The SDL government had a poor track record of upholding the Constitution. In 2006, the CAMV merged into the SDL party, giving SDL the five extra seats necessary to win the 2006 elections.
Thus, although the SDL government was elected, it nevertheless has similarities to Bainimarama’s interim government, because both governments supported a coup.
CCF had tried to mediate between the PM’s Office and the military in 2006, to try and resolve the building tensions between the two parties. It is unfortunate that the coup happened in 2006.
A conflict cannot be resolved without engaging with the aggressors. The aggressors in 2001 were supporters of the 2000 coup, whereas the aggressors in 2008 today are the military.
The reality is that the coup culture will not end in Fiji unless all parties engaged in current and past coups come together with all other stakeholders in Fiji, and find a way forward.
The military has agreed to be examined under the process of the People’s Charter for Change, Peace and Progress, to find a solution to end the coup cycles.
We call upon the SDL party to come forward now and engage in finding a solution to ending the coup cycle.
The comparison to Dr Shaista Shameem is not right. CCF is one of the first organisations that came out and publicly condemned the December 5 2006 coup. All CCF statements are issued to all media in Fiji and are available for public scrutiny.
Rev Akuila Yabaki