Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Parliamentary Committee to Investigate Torture Claims

BREAKING NEWS. Pn3. Military zero tolerance violence
against women.

             Stop all brutality

This is a healthy development. I hope the Committee starts by defining torture, and if the Fiji allegations fall outside the definition, it be widened to include brutality,  a less emotional and, in my opinion, a more appropriate term for the alleged actions. Further down the road the real test will be whether government acts on the Committee's recommendations should they find the allegations valid.   - Croz

Torture claims

Siteri SauvakacolBBBBBo And Nasik Swami
Tuesday, December 15, 2015

A MEETING of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and Defence yesterday has agreed to look into allegations of torture by lawyer Aman Ravindra Singh and the abrupt departure of the former commissioner of police.
The meeting followed a letter from committee member Roko Tupou Draunidalo to committee chairman Netani Rika urging the committee to look into the alleged matters because they were central to the committee's oversight functions, duties and powers.
She said the committee would soon invite members of the public involved in the matter who had been allegedly tortured and unlawfully detained to make submissions before it.
Following submissions, the committee is expected to compile a report and table it to Parliament for further actions.
While the committee finalises a date for public submissions, Acting RFMF Commander Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto has refuted claims by Mr Ravindra Singh of mistreatment at the hands of the disciplined forces.
"There is no involvement of military personnel on any of those allegations but if there is anything, we will wait for police. If they are going to lodge a formal complaint, there will be an investigation," Rear Admiral Naupoto said.
Acting Commissioner of Police Brigadier General Sitiveni Qiliho has given his reassurance they would investigate the claims should an official police complaint be lodged.
"I told him (Mr Ravindra Singh) to call me when he lodged an official complaint but he hasn't and nothing as well has been lodged in the West," Brig-Gen Qiliho said.
"I gave Aman that personal assurance as well last week that we will deal with the issue."
When contacted yesterday, Mr Ravindra Singh said he would call an official press conference on Wednesday.
Mr Ravindra Singh's story has been reported in the international media claiming the men who tortured his friends wore military boots, were well-trained and spoke in a certain manner.
He told Radio New Zealand specifically that he and his staff were fearful after three attacks, two of which happened within hours of each other two weeks ago.


  1. Dear Croz,

    I am afraid that your concerns about the definition of torture pales into insignificance when we consider the AGs intervention that stopped the entire process. So the government has acted very promptly, but not in the way you might have expected!

    Does this action give some credence to the concerns often expressed about the state of the justice and governance in Fiji?
    Does it trigger any trace of doubt in your mind?

    "Fiji speaker stance disputed
    There are contradictory reports from Fiji on whether a parliamentary committee meeting this week had the approval of the speaker, Jiko Luveni.
    A committee member, Ratu Isoa Tikoca, says the speaker had given authority for the committee to deliberate on allegations about human rights abuses raised by a lawyer Aman Ravindra-Singh.
    However the Fiji Sun reports that she did not give the go-ahead.
    The meeting was stopped at the instigation of the attorney-general, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, who says a complaint about violence must be reported to the police before it is referred to any other institution."

  2. Last i remember torture or any other crime was required to be reported to the Police to investigate! Their role is find out the facts or the claims made. Have we somehow jumped the "gun" here and finding that it is now the role of a Committee in Parliament? Who are the expertise on such a Committee to investigate such allegations be it true or false?

  3. Croz
    When we say police do we mean the militarised police under the control of the human rights abusing junta military? Hey Croz, what happened to Commissioner 'YES MAN'? Why did he do a runner?


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