Tuesday, October 14, 2008

'Rabuka's legacy' - nice one, Mosmi

LETTER in today's Fiji Times ... from former journo now civil rights advocate Mosmi Bhim:
Rabuka's legacy
There is a loophole in our laws through which treasonous acts can be carried out with impunity. This loophole was discovered by the father of coups in Fiji, Mr Sitiveni Rabuka, who got himself immunity from prosecution for the 1987 coups.
Till today, Rabuka can't stop gloating about his cleverness in getting immunity, which is glorified through the weekly opinion columns in the daily media.
George Speight also got himself immunity from prosecution in 2000 - but his immunity came with conditions. Imagine if George Speight had not violated the conditions, he would have been like Sitiveni Rabuka - gloating about his unprosecuted crime every week.
It was no surprise when Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama [pictured] and his comrades secured immunity as a first step, even before they created an interim regime.
They remembered the lesson from Rabuka.
What do we do about this loophole in our laws? It is essential that we have an Executive Head of State with reserve powers that can be utilised in times of emergency. But surely, granting of immunity for treason and takeovers of government should not be a permissible activity for any President.
Rabuka's legacy lives on through the taint on the office of the Fiji President.
Mosmi Bhim

1 comment:

Tim Selwyn said...

The court should have declared the coup and its leaders and its orders illegal and unconstitutional and then issued arrest warrants for those leaders. Issued arrest warrants from the bench to the Police Commissioner - who I understand is an army plant - and the other agencies to arrest those leaders. There must be some prosecution authority with competence.

Opportunity lost.

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