Army warns on amnesty Bill

  • 31st May 2004
  • 2004
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The Fiji army has warned it will not stand by and let “power hungry individuals manipulate the process of the law to suit their hidden agendas”.

The statement from army spokesman Captain Neumi Leweni comes in the wake of calls by government coalition partner the CAMV for army commander, the Police commissioner and the DPP to step down because of their opposition to the Amnesty Bill.

But Leweni said the removal of the three would be a disaster. “Removing the very people who worked tirelessly during the 2000 crisis to bring about law and order in the country would be a disaster,” he countered.

“It is like saying we should do away with the law and we will be able to achieve stability in the country,” he was reported as saying by the Fiji Sun.

The army which has made public its very strong opposition to the Bill, sent its senior officers to Parliament today to witness the tabling of the Bill. In an unprecendented, and ominous move, about a dozen senior offices in full uniform lined the public gallery in the House of Reps today.

It was an obvious statement to underscore how deeply the army feels about this Bill coming into law.

The Bill is aimed at providing amnesty and a general pardon to all those involved in the political crisis of 2000 which saw the overthrow of the People’s Coalition Government led by Labour’s Mahendra Chaudhry.