Tailevu chiefs and their people yesterday pledged their support for Prime Minister Rear Admiral (Retired) Voreqe Bainimarama. Their support was offered during traditional ceremonies to welcome him to the Tailevu Provincial Council meeting at Ratu Cakobau House in Nausori yesterday. Adi Litia Cakobau, the eldest surviving daughter of the late Vunivalu, Ratu Sir George Kadavulevu Cakobau, said: “I am all for him because he has done a lot for the nation.” Mr Bainimarama said afterwards: “I must admit that I’m really touched with the support of the Tailevu province for me as I prepare for the September 17 elections. “Please do not vote for me because I’m from Tailevu, but vote for what I’m doing for the nation,” he said. The PM said they must not forget the other members of his proposed party contesting the elections. More support for his leadership and his proposed political party was expressed in the talanoa session . Ratu Timoci Vesikula from the chiefly clan in Ucunivanua, Verata, and who was a Minister for Fijian Affairs in the Rabuka Government, also offered his support. But he warned that “while you have the support of the people of Tailevu, the elections would not be easy sailing because many who supported all the good things you had done for the nation, will not be voting for you.” “We want you to be back to lead the nation after the September elections. If you win, Tailevu will be proud, and if you lose Tailevu will be at a loss.” Ratu Timoci asked the PM what would happen if he lost the election. Mr Bainimarama replied that he had briefed the High Commissioners and Ambassadors in Fiji that a win for him in the elections would be a bonus. However, if he lost, he was glad that he had put in place a Constitution for the nation. Mr Bainimarama said during the change of leadership in 2006 and as Commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces, the military had to make sacrifices like abolishing the Bose Levu Vakaturaga and stopping the Methodist Church annual conference. Many, he said, were against the move but it was done to protect the two institutions because they were highly politicised by politicians. He assured the people of Tailevu that if his party was elected to lead the Government he would continue with the service delivery.