TWO FIJI COPS DIE IN FITNESS TEST

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SUVA, Fiji (Fijilive, July 7) - Two police officers died from apparent heart failure after participating in a program to test the fitness levels of the force, prompting a review of its fitness policy.

One of the officers, Akuila Senikuraciri, 38, died last Friday at his station in Nabouwalu on Vanua Levu after suffering a heart attack shortly after completing the fitness test, according to police spokeswoman Unaisi Vuniwaqa.

Another, Alifereti Tora, 39, died on Wednesday after collapsing at the police barracks grounds in Nasova, Suva. He collapsed while running and a post mortem examination will be conducted.

Vuniwaqa said in a statement that because of the deaths and "other similar cases," police managers will "review the fitness of the force."

She said the review will focus on getting officers up to the required fitness level in the lead-up to the twice-yearly fitness tests.

"The force is firm in its belief that we still need to have fit officers to carry out its court function of policing," said Vuniwaqa.

July 8, 2005

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