NEWS

Ex-rebel: I Now Back Our PM

A 2000 rebel yesterday apologised for his part and pledged his support for Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s FijiFirst Government. Peni Tabuva of Qelekuro Village, Tailevu, fighting back tears, said he regretted
23 Oct 2015 13:06
Ex-rebel: I Now Back Our PM
Peni Tabuva of Qelekuro Village, Tailevu. Photo: Rama

A 2000 rebel yesterday apologised for his part and pledged his support for Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama’s FijiFirst Government.

Peni Tabuva of Qelekuro Village, Tailevu, fighting back tears, said he regretted his role and said: “I am sorry.”

It came as Mr Bainimarama visited Qelekuro to open a tap water supply provided by his FIjiFirst Government.

In 2000 Mr Tabuva was one of the six young men from the village who were picked up by a truck and driven to Tailevu areas. They terrorised Indo-Fijians, and with others took over Korovou Town and set up roadblocks.

He served one and half years in Jail for his part. Mr Tabuva said 2000 was a terrible time where they had jumped the

bandwagon in support of coup leader George Speight.

“I was married then but no children. My wife did not know what was happening. Now I have two children,” he said.

He now earns his living from farming.

Mr Tabuva said their 2000 actions brought shame to their families and the village of Qelekuro.

“My family was embarrassed and hurt when they heard of what I got myself into because these were not the values that they taught me,” he said.

“It still haunts me today. But I am strong enough to let go of my past and move on with my life, I will make sure that I will not go back to the mess I put myself into.”

Mr Tabuva hailed the FijiFirst Government for promoting a multiracial society living in peace and harmony.

“With this current Government I have realised that people from all different walks of life are having their fair share of assistance from the Government without any conflicts and we are happy with other our brothers and sisters from other races,” he said.

He said the piped water project was a classic example of the people-oriented development the FijiFirst Government was being engaged in.

Meanwhile, village elder Vilitati Bulagi said the involvement of six young men from their village in the 2000 coup brought humiliation to them.

“We tried to stop them in 2000 but we could not. It was difficult.

“On behalf of the six, we would like to apologise for their involvement,” he said.

Feedback: arieta.vakasukawaqa@fijisun.

 



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