He may have dipped out on the government pension but he can certainly bank on support, if debate is to be believed.
The SDL leader and former prime minister, Laisenia Qarase, and his time in government is under discussion on the Matavuvale blog tonight and he's emerging as a respected leader, perhaps even Fiji's best prime minister, according to some comments.
The discussion "PM Laisenia Qarase - Fiji's Best Prime Minister Yet?" was initiated by Tui Savu, who posted the following comments.
"There has been much said about the Qoliqoli and Reconciliation Bill and claims of it being racist and immoral, yet these (2006) coup perpetrators commit and continue to commit the very same act and even worse without any lawful authorisation.
"Some I’ve spoken to who’s been involved in Fiji’s political situation since 1970 said that certain segments of the community feared PM Qarase because they could not buy him.
"I remember asking him during the Brisbane Meeting in 2009, why he didn’t follow former PM Rabuka’s stance during the State Funeral for the late Tui Cakau and defer to the President of the Senate to speak on behalf of the nation because Rabuka saw himself as a commoner and not as PM of Fiji an he answered he ‘didn’t know, but thought it the right thing to do.’
"I commended him because it was a courageous and bold move and said that protocol dictated the PM speaks on behalf of the Nation and his speech was so moving and touched the depths of our emotions. I then said to PM Qarase, ‘that’s when you eclipsed Rabuka.’
"I stand to be corrected, but it is my belief that history will place PM Qarase possibly one, if not the best, PM Fiji’s had in the past 30 years since Independence. What do you say?"
It's a pretty big call but some of the replies so far have supported the suggestion:
If the coup did not took place in 2006, all indigenous will be millionaires in their own country.
Usaia Pita Waqatairewa:
After Hurricane Tomas hit, the government visited Vanuabalavu and gave each family ration packs consisting of 2 kg flour, 2 tin fish, 1 kg dhal and 1 packet tea. Nothing has been forth coming ever since.
It has to take the effort of philanthropist Mere Samisoni to fly in regularly to her relos in Lomaloma arranging tarpaulin and rations for those villages.
Qarase has been doing the same for his people of Mavana and what has kept them going was the reserve funds he had kept for them through the Mavana Holdings two co-op shops in Mavana and Lomaloma.
Now that is the kind of Prime Minister that we want who still toils for his people free of charge!
Joe Bardy: Based on achievements I rated Rt Mara ahead of Mr Qarase. On popularity amongst the indigenous Fijian I would agree with you TSavu Mr Qarase is No. 1.
Unise Vuniwai: I would lift my hands up for this man if ever he was to be Fiji's PM again.-Matavuvale
Pictures: Qarase and his nemesis, Bainimarama and the moment of truth in 2006.