The former commander of Fiji's third infantry has revealed tonight in his fourth video that Frank Bainimarama, was the one who carried out the beatings on three women at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks.
The pro-democracy activists were Laisa Digitaki, Virisila Buadromo (pictured above with former US Secretary of State, Condaleeza Rice) and Jacquline Koroi (pictured right).
In his video Bainimarama the Beast, Mara says Bainimarama needed to clamp down on all protests to his illegal takeover, just after the December coup in 2006. "Anyone too vocal was taken up to QEB barracks, where they were assaulted and humiliated."
Mara says there were a number of soldiers at camp that night but he says it was Bainimarama, wearing a bush hat and brown overalls and no signs of his rank, who led the assault against the pro-democracy advocates.
He says Bainimarama landed the first blow ... then continued to punch and kick them. He says when they fell to the ground, he jumped on their backs.
Mara says it was dark and the women could not see clearly who their attackers were, and that Pita Driti, the land force commander at the time, was blamed for them. In reality, it was the illegal prime minister of Fiji, Frank Bainimarama.
Roko Ului's fourth statement in Fijian
Media Statement No. 4
Bainimarama The Beast
Lt. Col. Ratu Tevita Uluilakeba Mara, Commander of the 3FIR
Firstly I want to comment on the allegations made by Bainimarama that my statements are racist.
I am not a racist and I have not made any racist comments. I have told Fiji that Bainimarama is in thrall to Khaiyum the Attorney General. Those remarks are about two individuals and race does not come into it. It is in the national interests of all in Fiji to understand that Bainimarama is the puppet of Khaiyum and we are following Khaiyum’s vision for Fiji and not Bainimarama’s.
I am the son of Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara. He was the founder of multiracial Fiji. His vision for Fiji included Fijians, Indians and all the races that make up our vibrant multicultural heritage. As his son I share those same values. Bainimarama playing the race card shows a shallow naval officer clearly out of his depth.
I will now go into my personal recollection of the events that took place:
In December 2006 Bainimarama needed to clamp down on all protests to his illegal takeover of Fiji. Anybody, too vocal, was taken up to QEB barracks where they were assaulted and humiliated. If he was not attacking their bodies he was attacking their property and organized a number of arson attacks against the people of Fiji.
One night 3 ladies Laisa Digitaki, Virisila Buadromo & Jacquline Koroi were brought up to the camp along with Pita Waqavonovono. They were part of the Pro Democracy movement and had been very vocal in their protests. They had constructed a Pro Democracy shrine in Lami. Bainimarama decided that they were creating problems for his military junta and made the decision to silence them.
It was a pitch black night when the girls were brought to the barracks. There were a number of soldiers present including the Commander of the RFMF, Bainimarama. He was wearing a bush hat, brown overalls and no obvious signs of his rank.
The men were hanging back unsure what to do. This was the first time there were women in the camp needing to be silenced. Bainimarama landed the first blow. He then continued to punch and kick them. When they had fallen to the ground he jumped on their backs and continued with the beating.
The girls could not see who was attacking them and for a long time it has been blamed on Pita Driti. It was not Driti but Bainimarama, the man who calls himself the Prime Minister of Fiji.
I was there but I did not take part in any of the beatings. To answer the question why didn’t I stop it? The answer is you can’t tell your commanding officer to stop anything at that time. But that, is not really a good reason and I regret I did not do more. I apologize to you, Laisa, Virisila, Jacqueline and Pita and when I am back in Suva I will answer to you all.
It is very odd and probably says much about the fragile mental state of the man, that in all time Bainimarama was around for the beatings I have only ever seen him hit women, never men.
As I have said before I am happy to face the people of Fiji and account for my actions in 2006. I want to make sure, that Bainimarama, the man behind all the beatings should also stand trial in Fiji. I call upon Brigadier General Iowane Naivalarua , the Commissioner of Police, to follow up my allegations and to start an investigation into the beatings at QEB.