RFMF: Our Role

Yesterday I queried the PM's statement that the RFMF would continue to monitor events after the 2014 election. While this does not necessarily presume the military will "stand over" or attempt to reshape each and every event, the assumption preempts the recommendations of the Constitution Commission and Assembly on the future role of the military.  And for this reason alone,  the PM should desist from such statements and Col. Tikitoga must learn not to rise to every provocation by Gvoernment opponents.

This article from the Fiji Sun
The Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) poses no threat to anyone, one of the top officers said.However, he said it had instilled confidence in all Fijians and investors since taking over leadership in December 2006.
RFMF spokesman and Land Force Commander, Colonel Mosese Tikoitoga, said this in response to continued statements by the United Peoples Party leader, Mick Beddoes, who had been talking about threats from the military.
Reacting to a front page report by the  Fiji Sun on June 13 titled, “Warning” with the sub head RFMF: We fear corrupt leaders coming back” and on the June 15 titled, “PM warns critics”,  Mr Beddoes said the comments made by the Prime Minister represented a real and grave threat.
The Prime Minister had warned politicians about the old political games they were trying to play
the people as they prepared for the constitutional process and  the 2014 general elections.
Mr Beddoes also commented on the fear of the RFMF at the idea of an independent judicial investigation into the events of 2006.
Colonel Tikoitoga said Mr Beddoes had been speaking courageously and without fear against the military and government leadership.
“That is his right under the freedom of speech but he should also be prepared for the reactions from the other parties,” Colonel Tikoitoga said.
On the claim by Mr Beddoes that the RFMF was spreading fear on the statements in the Fiji Sun Colonel Tikoitoga said the UPP president was again using his old political ploys to gain political mileage using the peoples’ emotions.
“He is creating his own threat and is putting the blame on others.
“The spreading of fear and threats by representatives of the military is not consistent with the pledge made by the Prime Minister for wide-ranging, free and inclusive discussions. It is also not in the national interest.
“This is a non-issue and it is political.”
According to Colonel Tikoitoga, Mr Beddoes had started his election campaign by criticising the RFMF and the Prime Minister. However he said the people had confidence in the Prime Minister and the RFMF.
On criticisms about the involvement of the military in the constitutional process, Colonel Tikoitoga said the military would play a very important role in the process.
“RFMF will be there to see that things are done in transparent and accountable manner.”
The fear of the RFMF he said is corrupt politicians   taking advantage of the constitutional process.
Colonel Tikoitoga assured members of the public that the military is there for their protection and at no time should fear their involvement in the constitutional process.


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