PRE-COUP PLOT TO BOMB FIJI AIRPORT ALLEGED

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SUVA, Fiji (FijiSUN, Dec. 20) – Two prominent Fijian business executives were behind plans to bomb Nadi International Airport and other strategic points in Suva when the People’s Coalition Government came into power after the 1999 General Elections, it was alleged yesterday.

Former nationalist party senior member Josaia Waqabaca told the Fiji Sun that he and explosive experts Maciu Navakasuasua and Jioji Bakoso were given money to execute the job, from which they later withdrew.

"This was the start of instability that later manifested into the May 19, 2000 coup," Mr Waqabaca said.

He confirmed that in his statement to police he revealed the identities of the two business executives and the number of the hotel room in Nadi where the payments were done.

"These two business executives collected money from the business community but they paid us peanuts to do the dirty work while they kept the rest of the money. They used it to start their businesses, which are now booming," Mr Waqabaca said.

He revealed that police should have no excuse because they had been given all the information in detail.

"The police should have taken in these two business executives and interrogated them because it is from there that they will get to the main players of the May 19, 2000 political crisis."

In earlier interview, Mr Navakasuasua indicated the two business executives were economist Navitalai Naisoro and Strategic Air Services Limited chief executive officer Watisoni Nata.

Mr Naisoro and Mr Nata denied the allegations, indicating that they did not know Mr Navakasuasua.

However, Mr Navakasuasua said yesterday that he is willing to come to Fiji to prove his allegations.

"The police should not close the coup investigations because the main players have to be punished and once that is done, we can go for reconciliation where God will bless our country. We should not brush everything under the carpet because if it is not resolved, it (coup) can happen again and the Fijian people will suffer more," he said from his home in Sydney.

Opposition leader Mahendra Chaudhry [who was overthrown as prime minister in the 2000 coup] said Mr Navakasuasua’s statement of police laxity in the coup investigations was a serious matter

"I myself have written to the police several times enquiring about the progress in investigations but have had little satisfaction," said the former Prime Minister.

Mr Chaudhry called on Police Commissioner Andrew Hughes for answers on the status of the coup investigations and "in particular, what is happening regarding the allegations made by Mr Navaksuasua. He (Navaksuasua) claims to have evidence on the involvement of the real leaders behind the 2000 coup and the names of financiers. Navakasuasua should be brought back at the State’s expense by the police or the DPP’s office to assist in the investigations and to give evidence," Mr Chaudhry added.

Other parties have aired the same sentiments.

When contacted, Police Assistant Commissioner Moses Driver said investigation into the coup was progressing and his officers are putting in all their effort to do a good job.

December 20, 2005

FijiSUN: http://www.sun.com.fj/

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