Laisenia Qarase and Mahendra Chaudry may have joined forces for political expediency recently but there's no mistaking their hostile past.
In a book published by the Australian National University, the ousted Qarase zeroes in on the role of his nemesis, Chaudhry, both before and after the December 2006 coup of military dictator Frank Bainimarama.
"The 2006 Military Takeover – A Coup To End All Coups”, was printed in March and edited by academics Jon Fraenkel, Stewart Firth and Dr Brij Lal.
Qarase, who has now formed an alliance with Chaudhry - the pair sent a joint submission to the Commonwealth Ministerial Action Group; criticises Chaudhry and the handling of an inquiry clearing him of wrong-doing following the discovery of his $2 million stash in Australia.
In Qarase's article “From Fear And Turmoil To The Possibilities Of Hope And Renewal Once Again”, he accuses Chaudhry of calling for the licensing of the media after it revealed his offhsore account early last year. The revelations resulted in the deportation of two expatriate publishers.
Qarase also accuses both Chaudhry and interim prime minister, Frank Bainimarama, of falsehoods and deception in trying to justify the overthrow of his SDL/Labour Multi-Party government.
He also alleges Chaudhry tried to prevent 9 FLP Members of Parliament from joining the Multi-Party Cabinet after 2006 elections but says Chaudhry had to bow to pressure from his own caucus and the public.
Qarase says after the 2006 elections, the nation had a genuine Multi-Party Cabinet comprising of Fijians and Indians with clear mandates from their respective communities.
He views with suspicion Chaudhry’s decision not to be personally part of the Cabinet and alludes to the fact that the FLP leader was quick to support Bainimarama’s coup and joined his interim Cabinet.
The 472 page book has been published by Australia National University E-Press.
Chaudhry's counter claims
The 472 page book also features, the disgraced Fiji Labour Party leader Mahendra Chaudhry, who has revealed he is a deceptive politician prepared to jump into bed with anyone for his personal survival.
Chaudhry’s article is in Chapter 20 and titled “Democracy versus good governance”.
In his story, Chaudhry repeats the allegations he leveled atQarase as the interim finance minister in Frank Bainimarama’s regime for 18 months until August last year.
Chaudhry describes the Multi-Party Cabinet as a farce. He accuses pro-democracy activists of being part of what he describes as Qarase’s gravy train. He accuses them of being beneficiaries of misrule, corruption and exploitation of ordinary people. But Chaudhry fails to name the personalities that he accused.