RABUKA SAYS NO REPEAT OF ’87 COUPS IN FIJI ELECTIONS

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SUVA, Fiji Islands (April 8, 1999 - PACNEWS/Daily Post)---Fiji’s Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka says his SVT (Soqosoqo ni Vakavulewa ni Taukei) Government is working in the best interest of the country to avoid a repetition of the disastrous 1987 political events.

However, Rabuka told the Daily Post newspaper there could still be political instability this year.

"People should not create a similar situation which caused the two military coups of 1987," he said.

Rabuka, the then Colonel in the Fiji Military Forces, who was responsible for the bloodless coups, said political instability could be avoided through national unity.

"I am working towards peace, a united and a harmonious Fiji for the people of all races," he said.

"Military intervention in 1987 was done to maintain security, law and order for the nation. That was all," the Prime Minister said.

He assured the people of Fiji, particularly the Indo-Fijian community, that there would be no bloodshed during and after the May election.

"How can I stage another coup when people who were with me in 1987 are now against me. They have formed other political parties and these are the same group of people who are now singing the tune of national unity and multi-racialism," Rabuka said.

Rabuka named Poseci Bune, Fiji’s former Permanent Representative to the United Nations, and Manasa Lasaro, former Head of the Methodist Church in Fiji, as those who had turned against him. They are leading candidates of the newly formed Christian Democratic Alliance party.

The General Elections will be held from May 8-15.

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