|Sitiveni Qiliho gets the Operational Leadership Award. pics MINFO|
Just days after the release of the photos of CRW soldiers beaten and tortured to death for their role in the 2000 mutiny, Fiji's illegal leader has awarded medals to some of the soldiers who've carried out his dirty deeds.
At a medal parade yesterday at Queen Elizabeth barracks, the country's illegal leader (incongrously kitted out in navy whites), awarded the likes of Lieutenant Colonel Sitiveni Qiliho, with the Operational Leadership Award.
Qiliho, the CSO for Operations, has been fingered in the torturing and killing of the IFMS soldiers and the torching of the Deuba house of Justice Ward.
In a speech aimed at reminding soldiers how good they have it under him (Fiji's soldier's are now some of the best paid in the world thanks to the regime pumping millions into the military budget), Bainimarama yesterday reminded military personnel that their obligation is towards the welfare of their family and the community.
He saluted RFMF members for what he said was their continuous contribution towards the welfare of the nation saying: "Please let us continue to provide the best service towards our course until the nation goes to polls in 2014.”
It's widely believed Frank Bainimarama intends to cement his power at the elections by becoming prime minister but some insiders maintain his preferred plan is to become president.
They believe his only choice is to become president with absolute power as commander-in-chief and to let someone else run his party for the 2014 elections.
At yesterday's medal parade which is normally held on or before Fiji Day (sources say it was not on the routine RFMF agenda and was brought forward to counter the photos and the BOI revelations), Bainimarama sought the support of security forces in the consultation of the new Constitution supposedly due to start this week reminding them of the need to be 'transparent.'
In what was clearly a pitch for the military to keep backing him, he said: "The new constitution will affirm that there will be no discrimination, no ethnic voting one, and establish the democratic principle of one person, one vote, one value."
PM tells RFMF put family and community first