IT'S ALL TRUE, SAYS RABUKA ABOUT BIOGRAPHY

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By Mithleshni Gurdayal and Joyhn Kamea

SUVA, Fiji Islands (March 29, 2000 -- The Fiji Sun/Pasifik Nius/Niuswire)---Former Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka maintained that the new and controversial insights in his biography, Rabuka of Fiji, are all true, the Fiji Sun reports.

He said everything in the book was written in the way he told the author, Australian academic Professor John Sharpham.

Speaking at a press briefing yesterday, Rabuka said the difference between the books No Other Way and Rabuka of Fiji are [that] the former is a "story" while the latter is his "first biography."

Rabuka hinted that while he was the only one involved in the coup, there are others who were only informed but not involved.

Rabuka said he has nothing to do with plans for another biography on him.

He said his book would be good reading material for students of politics.

"Not only has it revealed my person, my thoughts, my beliefs and my struggles, it also gives a background to the politics of our nations and the politics of the region," Rabuka said.

"I now propose that it is time that people of the newly independent states in the Pacific re-look at themselves, their democratic compositions and the constitution handed to them during independence.

"I propose that perhaps it is time that these newly independent nations do a political audit to see whether the applicability of their constitutions handed to them at independence still applies.

"We need to stay abreast with developments and democratic developments and compositions. Leaders of the Pacific need to keep in constant touch with developments in their own country and the developments around them," Rabuka said.

He said Pacific leaders should not be nationalistic in their leadership but rule with broad perspectives.

Meanwhile, a former [unnamed] army officer [who took part in the May 1987 coup] has claimed Rabuka is set to make money from the sale of his book.

The army officer, who is now a law graduate, was part of the May 1987 coup. He spoke to the Sun yesterday saying that Rabuka had "forgotten" about those who had helped him complete his mission.

"The sad thing is that we were never given any explanations about the exercise, or the consequences," he said.

Title -- 2625 POLITICS: It's all true, says Rabuka Date -- 29 March 2000 Byline -- Mithleshni Gurdayal and John Kamea Origin -- Pasifik Nius Source -- The Fiji Sun, 29/3/00 Copyright – FS Status – Unabridged

This document is for educational and research use only. Recipients should seek permission from the copyright source before reprinting.

PASIFIK NIUS service is provided by the niusedita via the Journalism Program, University of the South Pacific.

Please acknowledge Pasifik Nius:  niusedita@pactok.net.au  http://www.usp.ac.fj/journ/nius/index.html 

 

RABUKA TELLS FIJI: I'M A NATIONALIST

SUVA, Fiji Islands (March 29, 2000 – Fiji’s Daily Post)---"I'm a nationalist," former Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka declared yesterday at the book signing in Suva for his biography.

The man, whose life is told in Rabuka of Fiji, said that at times in his leadership he had to make up to the other races in Fiji.

"I'm a Fijian and no one will dispute that, and I have to admit I'm a Fijian," he said.

Mr. Rabuka said he was burdened with requests to foster Fijians in business. However, he had to make decisions to satisfy the other races.

He said that Fiji after the 1987 coup and other South Pacific countries had to learn from their past leaders.

From this book I've made a request, after the book launch in Australia and New Zealand, that our students of today learn the changes in politics in the South Pacific," he said.

People streamed in to get their copies of the biography signed by Mr. Rabuka at the function in the Lali Room at Centra Suva.

The first book of Mr. Rabuka's was Rabuka, No Other Way, which was mainly based on the coups in 1987, and the second is this biography by Professor John Sharpham.

Mr. Rabuka said that Fiji's people have been through some turbulent times. He decided to bare his soul to the author of Rabuka of Fiji, and said students of Fiji in the future will work out for themselves how they judge the book.

For additional reports from Fiji’s Daily Post, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Other News Resources/Fijilive.

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