Fiji Defence Minister: No Tolerance For Any Disturbance, Disruption

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Colonel Natuva tells Parliament he will maintain law and order

By Nasik Swami

SUVA, Fiji (Fiji Times, Oct. 16, 2014) – Government will not tolerate any attempts to disrupt Fiji's new democracy or thwart the will of the people.

That's the word from Defence Minister Colonel Timoci Natuva as he assured the nation that law and order would be maintained while delivering his maiden speech in Parliament yesterday.

Col. Natuva said his ministry would have zero tolerance for any disturbance or disruption. "When the Prime Minister said recently that people can sleep soundly in their beds at night without need for fear, he meant it," he said.

Col. Natuva said his job and the job of the police backed by military was to make sure that the promise was delivered.

"Our duty remains to protect every Fijian, our infrastructure, our values, our sovereignty and our economy on which the prosperity of everyone depends," he said.

Col. Natuva said the global security environment was dynamic and constantly changing.

"With a diverse range of threats that are on our horizon, our national security sector needs to be agile, flexible and adaptable to mitigate whatever threats may come our way and defeat them if necessary.

"To this end, we are strengthening our capabilities across the board, including our intelligence."

He said it was globally accepted that security was the platform for development.

"Therefore, the maintenance of internal stability and meeting our international security and defence obligations will be the overarching requirement.

"Over the next four years, I intend to ensure that all the arms of the national security sector are made more efficient and effective by instituting a reform program that will ensure the necessary democratic controls and civilian oversight equated with our new democracy is clearly established and respected."

Col Natuva also revealed that he will increase the capabilities and capacities of the two disciplined services.

"This will allow them to effectively and efficiently deliver to the expectations of government and people.

"I also intend to strengthen the role of my ministry to properly coordinate the activities of the national security machinery through the direction and mandate of the National Security Council."

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