Brutal military dictatorship that backs Fiji Water

Fiji Water isn't just devastating to the environment of Fiji, the planet that endures the cost of shipping it, and the environments of the places where it is consumed. It is also the product of a brutal military regime that monitors all outgoing Internet traffic from the island for criticisms of the water business and immediately arrests people who transmit them, bringing them in for intensive questioning and the occasional prison-rape threat, as journalist Anna Lenzer discovered.

I sat down and sent out a few emails--filling friends in on my visit to the Fiji Water bottling plant, forwarding a story about foreign journalists being kicked off the island. Then my connection died. "It will just be a few minutes," one of the clerks said.

Moments later, a pair of police officers walked in. They headed for a woman at another terminal; I turned to my screen to compose a note about how cops were even showing up in the Internet cafés. Then I saw them coming toward me. "We're going to take you in for questioning about the emails you've been writing," they said.

What followed, in a windowless room at the main police station, felt like a bad cop movie. "Who are you really?" the bespectacled inspector wearing a khaki uniform and a smug grin asked me over and over, as if my passport, press credentials, and stacks of notes about Fiji Water weren't sufficient clues to my identity. (My iPod, he surmised tensely, was "good for transmitting information.") I asked him to call my editors, even a UN official who could vouch for me. "Shut up!" he snapped. He rifled through my bags, read my notebooks and emails. "I'd hate to see a young lady like you go into a jail full of men," he averred, smiling grimly. "You know what happened to women during the 2000 coup, don't you?"

Eventually, it dawned on me that his concern wasn't just with my potentially seditious emails; he was worried that my reporting would taint the Fiji Water brand. "Who do you work for, another water company? It would be good to come here and try to take away Fiji Water's business, wouldn't it?" Then he switched tacks and offered to protect me--from other Fijian officials, who he said would soon be after me--by letting me go so I could leave the country. I walked out into the muggy morning, hid in a stairwell, and called a Fijian friend. Within minutes, a US Embassy van was speeding toward me on the seawall.

Fiji Water: Spin the Bottle (via Kottke)

Update: Fiji's response and Mother Jones's rebuttal here.

(Image: Fiji Water, a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike image from Jessica N. Diamond's Flickr stream)



  1. I always thought this shit was Tennessee tap water that Coca-Cola filtered and bottled, just like all the other bottled-water scams…

  2. Nefarious water bottling companies? Tell us something we don’t know. A water bottling company playing key roles in a nation’s government? Interesting.

  3. The reporter must be mistaken. If there were a problem with Fiji water, it wouldn’t be for sale here in the enlightened USA.

  4. @ben morris: I imagine a regime like that would treat the sending of encrypted email pretty much exactly the same as it treats the sending of plaintext dissident email.

    I like how Mother Jones baldly states in their article that the owner of Fiji Water also owns the company that does Mother Jones’ electronic publishing – and yet they’re publishing this extremely hostile expose anyway. You don’t fuck with Mother Jones.

  5. It’s all about plausible deniability. Instead of GnuPG-encrypted emails, why not just SSH to your box on port 443? Or, for that matter, why send it over the net at all? Save the material to a microSD card and hide it in plain sight – right in your phone/camera, with a TrueCrypted file-drive named and sized about the same as one of your other photos. Security can’t read it? Must be a corrupted photo, officer! I’m no security expert; I’m sure others can come up better than this but sending your dissident comments plain text seems like a great way to get a free ride to the local police station/torture shack.

    PS: I buy my fancy imported water from Norway.

  6. As an aside: What’s the legal decision on creative commons images including a trademarked brand or logo?

  7. @ #4 – well, I won’t be buying Fiji water for yet another reason. I don’t buy imported water anyway.

  8. Damn, but Fiji water is so delicious! Is there an equally delicious water out there that’s not run by a brutal military regime?

  9. @THEAWESOMEROBOT Try your sink and, if needed, a water filter. It’s free and no plastic bottle is implicated.

  10. This is why I drink my socialist U.S. government regulated tap water instead of opting for the free market capitalist variety.

  11. What fascinates me is the comments. It seems to me as if Fiji is trying to astroturf their comment board, not a good sign.

    As for the encryption issue, my guess is that she didn’t realise just how corrupt the regime was until the heavies started leaning on her. Naive, but understandable. After that, no amount of SSH or encryption will help, and it’s best just to get the heck out of Dodge.

  12. I don’t understand “designer” bottled water. Because it’s worth the energy required to ship water, across water, across a continent, to you, right? It tastes different than fresh water in an aquifer or water table underneath you, run through a carbon filter, right? I mean, Tap water is H20, but Fiji is H2-0hhh?

  13. The water has a relatively high silica content, which gives it a very smooth mouth feel. I’m no water snob, but it’s closer to mineral water than tap water.

    Generally, I don’t buy Fiji water (maybe 1-2 bottles a year) when I buy bottled water. And when I do buy bottled water, it’s usually mineral water, not rebottled tap water. (Apollinaris or Gerolsteiner FTW, but not often — I’m a customer of those artifically-sweetened phosphoric acid solutions sold by megacorporations mainly)

    The main reason I don’t prefer Fiji Water is that the country doesn’t have a decent water supply for its citizens.

  14. As President of FIJI Water, I encourage readers to read our response to the article, which we have posted on our blog: I also encourage readers to post any questions they might have on our blog, where all reasonable queries will be responded to by employee representatives.

    We strongly disagree with the author’s premise that because we are in business in Fiji that somehow legitimizes a military dictatorship. We bought FIJI Water in November 2004, when Fiji was governed by a democratically elected government. FIJI Water does not nor will ever actively support the government of the day. The government does not speak for us and we cannot and will not speak for the government. What we can do is try to help the socio-economic development of Fiji as much as we can by running a world-class company that provides much-needed jobs, health care, education, and clean drinking water to the people who live in the villages surrounding our company and the greater community of Fiji.

    John Cochran
    President, FIJI Water

  15. Seriously, Fiji water is the best tasting water I’ve tasted. I wish I could tell why, as I’d be quite happy to buy something else and leave the Fijian water to Fijians.

  16. Best practice is to make sure you are just not choosing your bottled water by marketing or peer pressure is to set up a simple blind taste test with 4 or more local bottled waters, your favorite designer water, and tap water. I did this once with water and beer. In my water test I choose Ozarka 1st then tap water 2nd.

  17. Speaking of ass, you know what is really bad for the environment? Triple ply ultra soft toilet paper. Seriously, if you’re not using one of the recycled paper fiber toilet paper brands by now then you haven’t been paying attention. Virgin forest to ass-wipe paper= not cool.

  18. corporations… have far too much power… we need to go to war against them to cut them back downb to size.

  19. I visited Fiji during the 2000 coup. Everybody was polite, apologetic, and thankful to have any tourist business. “They’ll get tired of it, and then everybody will sit down and drink kava and things will go back to normal,” people said.

    It sounds as though things never did go back to normal.

    But hey, there’s two things going on here. The obvious one is the government using the military to quash dissent. The other is a government that is catering to corporate interests, even at the expense of the people.

    I’m glad the US merely flirted with the former in the last ten years. The latter, though…

  20. Why has no one put this together….
    French nuclear testing in the 50’s were
    rampant around these islands. Some islands are still off limits due to radioactivity!
    I would not drink the ground water from any of those islands. TEST the water for RADIOACTIVITY!

  21. @21, that response is… Completely unconvincing at best.

    I don’t drink bottled water myself, because I see it as unnecessarily wasteful when I have a magical pipe that brings water right to my glass… But every once in a while it does happen, you forget to bring a bottle filled with tap or you’ve just already drained it… I’ve always made sure to avoid Fiji water in those cases, found them despicable for a long time. This is just the icing on the cake.

    And yes, #25 tamahomejenkins, I thought the exact same thing…

  22. “I also encourage readers to post any questions they might have on our Fiji Green blog”

    Unless they don’t like the question/comment, in which case they won’t post it. Happened to me yesterday.

  23. @15 – now usually I agree, but Fiji water DOES actually taste better to me by leaps and bounds. There’s a very nice smoothness to it. I’m picky when I’m paying for bottled water (which I don’t do frequently to begin with) – and something like Dasani has an obvious chemically-treated taste to it that actually tastes worse than tap water.

    I don’t know why people label it as “designer” bottled water – at my local grocery store it’s never more than about $.25 over a bottle of Poland Springs. I don’t know if it differs elsewhere, but honestly I don’t feel that such a minimal markup graduates something to “designer.”

    So I still stand with my initial disappointment – in the weird world of bottled water Fiji is good stuff, but I’m likely to avoid it now.

    Also, just reiterating what Xeni touched upon in her tweets earlier today. There are people in the world who are dying over the lack of clean water – and here we discussing which bottled waters we will/won’t buy. What a weird world we’re in.

  24. Chilled, filtered (if you don’t like the taste of the additive laden stuff), tap water. Bottled water is just another unecessary product.

  25. @34 you’re obviously joking – but before anyone actually goes looking into it, Poland Spring is located in Maine.

    I believe they’re owned by Nestlé now – which isn’t exactly known for being an awesome corporation themselves.

  26. Folks, (and to Mr. Cochran above, or if not actually him, whoever posted his statement anonymously as “President, FIJI Water”) —

    Anna Lenzer, the reporter who authored the article for Mother Jones, has posted a reply to FIJI Water’s response to her article:

    Though Fiji Water casts itself as a progressive icon in America, it has not distanced itself from the military junta that rules the island nation (whose name, in capital letters, it has legally trademarked as its brand). Its only public opposition to the Fijian government—a government so undemocratic, the Commonwealth has recently announced plans to suspend it—has been a decade-old effort to prevent and minimize taxes, fees, or tariffs. The most pointed criticism the company has made of the regime was when it opposed a tax as “draconian”; it has never used language even remotely as strong to refer to the junta’s human rights abuses.

  27. I worked with on of the guys who had helped start Fiji water and I can tell you they are quite proud of what they’ve done and completely clueless to the negative side.

    This guy is a Colorado hippie with money who preaches conservation and such from one side of his mouth while bragging about Fiji water from the other side. It’s disgusting.

  28. @ #21 posted by Anonymous, August 20, 2009 9:15 AM

    That still does not excuse the scumbaggery of privately owning a natural resource that should belong to the people of Fiji.

    Not only that but you are complicit in propping up a dictatorship by providing it money.

    If this is what happens to tourists/journalists in that country you can bet your sweet ass the oppression that the citizens of that country experience, is hundreds if not thousands of times worse.

    Whether the rights were sold to you by “democratically elected” officials or the dictatorial officials, still does not give you a free pass to steal their natural resources.

    For the record, I do not buy bottled water. I either drink Britta or Pur filtered municipal tap water.

  29. I was in Fiji in February. The poverty was surprising. I saw village women bathing under storm water drains with water coming out of the forest. Villagers would generally throw their waste over a cliff into the sea, leading to many waste-covered cliffs. I never saw Fiji water in Fiji. I did see it a month later in the US. I had to laugh. Not because it was funny, but because it offers this idealistic idea of beautiful and clean Fiji, when in reality many people are at a subsistence level and there is very little focus on protection of the environment. I thought that people wouldn’t drink Fiji water if they had actually been to Fiji.


    Brand Fiji

    Fiji Water isn’t just “in business in Fiji,” as the company puts it. The company’s business IS Fiji. As Rob Six told me last year, “we basically market Fiji with the product.” He said that Fiji Water is “one of the few industries that the government has right now that’s growing and it’s an export they’re able to get off the island and around the world. So it’s been a really good thing for the government.” …

  31. Oh, hai! Rest of the world here. Fiji is not just a tropical paradise.


    Now, shush, forget about it, fret not, go and drink some water….

  32. The question for the writers of the article is, why target Fiji Water only? There are about 10 water companies in Fiji.

    I am an indigenous Fijian and live in Fiji. Fiji Water has done their fair share of community obligations and contribution to the local economy.

    In Fiji, Fiji Water sets the benchmark for export market breakthrough which other Fiji export businesses are learning from.

    With Fijian politics, you can’t expect to understand these political turmoils just by spending a few days here. A majority of the people in Fiji supports the military takeover and that says a lot about the governing nature of the last democratic government.

    I suppose for you Americans, your last presidency echoes the situation I’ve just explained above where a leader was elected through a democratic system yet conducted itseld undemocratically.

    What happens when your leader or government misuse its power lying to the people in order to justify invading a sovereign country?

    Look at Iraq. The country lies in ruins with death beyond the millions at the hands of America. What does that say about your democracy?

    Fijian soldiers are in Iraq and Afghanistan helping America and Britain clean up its leaders messes. They have died for this cause in the name of propping up American and British capitalism and empires.

    If you would really like to know what life in Fiji is really like, take a trip down here and experience firsthand if Fiji is really in a military dictatorship or not.

  33. @44

    Not everyone who posts here is American, far from it!

    I’m from New Zealand, where we have quite a lot of coverage about the situation in Fiji.

    Fiji IS a military dictatorship. Journalism is practically extinct as the military take journalists who speak out about the regime and “convince” them to stop doing so. The national radio station in New Zealand is fast running out of Fijian journalists to interview because of this. People have been kidnapped and beaten by the military. It IS a military dictatorship.

    Sure, there have been lots of political problems in Fiji over the last few decades. This does not make a military dictatorship a desirable outcome.


  34. I’m with Ben Morris here. I’d think that handling the Internet would be on a par with handling a fountain pen for an old- time journalist.

    Quick summary:

    * Encrypt everything. Just encrypting “the important stuff” is a big red flag for the Bad Guys.

    * In particular, encrypt your home directory if not your whole disk. Many companies are requiring this on laptops used for business. Corporate espionage and identity theft are much bigger threats than Evil Government Agents.

    * All modern e-mail clients that I’m aware of have s-mime encryption built in. This will give you end- to- end security.

    * When you use webmail like gmail, be sure you’re using the https:// address instead of the http:// version. This gives you a secure connection to your webmail.

    * Connect to your own home mail server via encrypted connections. Use the secure versions of SMTP and IMAP. This gives you a secure e-mail connection to your home server.

    Everybody should know and use this stuff, not just journalists.

  35. @ 45

    If journalism is practically extinct, how come we still have our newspapers publishing, TV and radio stations still broadcasting, our internet cafes still open? The very one where Anna Lenser was in is still open 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

    There is a reason why the military leadership censored the news. They just do not want irresponsible reporting.

    It’s common knowledge to anyone who dare to learn a thing or two that today’s media no longer report in an impartial way like they were originally thought of to be doing. Today’s media mostly slant their coverage to their financiers or advertisers benefit. Some media organizations slant their reporting for the foreign governments they represent.

    What Anna Lenser wrote was merely one side of the story about Fiji and maybe Fiji Water as well.

    Knowing that you are a New Zealander, obviously your response to my comment is slanted to your interest.

    What about if we just close down all New Zealand and Australian companies operating in Fiji since they are propping up a military regime as you are saying? I bet your government would not like it as is the case this week when your own Prime Minister revealed at the National Press club in Australia that they are not going to apply trade sanctions on Fiji. Why is that? Because China is waiting in the wings?

    The current military leadership in Fiji are not blind to do what they did just to grab power. Fiji has been under political turmoil for 22 years now because someone came up with the idea that only indigenous Fijians should be allowed to lead fiji because they are the first inhabitants of Fiji. What a stupid ideology.

    The current military leadership removed the previous government because they keep on perpertuating the ideologies that lead to the coups in Fiji in 1987 and 2000. Those ideologies are continually exploited by politicians masquerading as Fijian nationalists when they are really not. People outside of Fiji will not understand the internal politics which are leading Fiji down those very destructive paths.

    Fiji is a multi-racial country and the Fiji Military Forces are paid for by the taxpayers of Fiji immaterial of your race, colour or creed. So the military should look after the safety of everyone including foreigners. That’s exactly what they are doing. It’s only when foreigners poke their face where are not supposed to do that they are thrown out of Fiji.

    In the case of Fiji Water, they were almost closed down together with all the other water bottling companies by the military government last year. In fact, they were closed for a week or two before the differences were resolved.

    To insinuate that Fiji Water is propping up the military government is stupid. Fiji Water is not the only foreign company in Fiji. There are more New Zealand and Australian company operating in Fiji then Americans.

    The stance taken by the government of Australia and New Zealand on Fiji has nothing to do with returning Fiji to democratic rule. It has to do with their own interest of fast tracking the PACER Plus trade agreement. This is why they have completely hijacked and infiltrated the Pacific Islands Foru, the body representing all the Pacific nations.

    There are more to what’s happening in Fiji than just one side of the story.

  36. “It’s only when foreigners poke their face where are not supposed to do that they are thrown out of Fiji.”

    like objecting to government use of prison rape?

  37. @ 50 TAKUAN

    Which prison rape is this? The Fiji Police Force are far better than threatening to rape someone. That has never and will never happen.

    So everyone of you believe Anna Lenzer’s version by merely relying on her article that doesn’t have a response from the Fiji Police Force?

    This is like believing George Bush’s version of WMD in Iraq. Only it turns out what a lie it was and a fabricated news to drive up support and justify the US invasion of a sovereign nation.

    Have you guys ever asked yourselves that maybe the article has an agenda on it? Or at least keep an open mind reading it. I thought that the level of education in the first world would have been able to figure that one out yet it turns out, we in the third world are not as gullible as you people are.

    What boggled my mind was Anna Lenzer’s insinuation that Fiji Water is propping up a military regime when there are many other foreign companies operating businesses in Fiji. The company itself started way back in 1993 and was bought by the Resnick’s in 2004. Both year Fiji was under a democratically led government.

    Lastly, I work for one of the ISP’s in Fiji, the very one that supplies the connection to that internet cafe. If there was any monitoring done on internet cafes or internet communication as a whole, it would have been done at our end. But there was no such directive from the military government to do such a thing.

    As I’ve mentioned before, Fiji’s current situation will be very complicated for foreigners to understand if they lack or do not have the background history on the coups in Fiji. you have to know that in order to understand why we are in this state today.

  38. Has anyone ever thought about how much waste Anna Lenzer produced just going to these places to write this story?

    Has she employed anyone in Fiji and contribute to the local economy?

  39. @ 55 56 57 TAKUAN

    Is that all you got? Relying on third party news sources to formulate your perception of Fiji?

    Who is Mother Jones? Does it contribute a single cent to Fiji’s economy?

    How about trying to find out the root causes of the political problems in Fiji before reporting anything on the country?

    Fiji is far from being a Burma – before, now, tomorrow and forever.In fact, Fiji is far safer than New Zealand, Australia and the United States, countries that are not ruled by the a military dictatorship.

    People who do not know the history of the coups in Fiji and its political problems will never understanding the current situation.

    Have you been to Fiji before, lately or at any other time?

    1. There have been coups in 1987, 2000 and 2006. Native Fijians and Indian Fijians are at odds (or being used as demographic puppets) in the struggle for control of the government. The fact that previous governments might have been bad is not a valid argument for the goodness of the current military government.

  40. what? you are saying you were there when Lenzer was grabbed for emailing? Really? What did they actually say?

  41. funny, that last post of yours… a strong sense of deja vu and then I realized it was almost word for word what someone with a military title posting from Burma once said to me.

  42. 2 TAKUAN

    As I said, I work for one of the ISP’s in Fiji. I’ve never been in the military at any time in my life and never will be at any time in the future.

    I’m not here defending the Fiji Military’s actions. I’m just here to put some perspective on the political problems in Fiji and a little bit on Fiji Water.

    That internet cafe which Anna Lenzer was in is just a few steps away from our office. In fact, we are just on the other side of the road. We can see what’s happening in the internet cafe from our office.The police station is a few blocks further away.

    In Suva, the capital city, everybody knows what’s happening next door because it is just a small city, more like a small village compared to the larger American cities and towns.

    If someone was arrested in an internet cafe, it would have been widely reported on the local blogs because neither the police nor the military have the means to monitor the blogs or the internet. That’s our job because we have the means to do it.

  43. @ TAKUAN

    Again, the censorship of the media in Fiji has to do with irresponsible reporting they’ve been doing all these years. In fact, a look back at leads up to previous political instabilities in Fiji in 1987 and 2000 clearly shows a number of media organizations playing a major role especially foreign ones.

    The media would like to have their freedom but it comes with responsibilities and accountabilities. They just don’t demand responsibilities and accountabilities from everybody else and do not demand it on themselves too.

    1. Again, the censorship of the media in Fiji has to do with irresponsible reporting they’ve been doing all these years.

      You should probably give up now before the real feeding frenzy starts.

  44. So that’s a threat? Are you people for the truth or what? Anyway, thanks for allowing my comments to be published on this blog. At least I’ve given the people who come and read here another side of the story they do not know. There is a need for fair and balanced reporting. Thanks a lot. Ni sa moce.

    1. So that’s a threat?

      Nope. Just letting you know that you lost your putative credibility with that statement.

  45. E dau cavu qo ki na vale ka sega soti ni caka vinaka na kena delavuvu, ka dau turu ena gauna ucauca.

  46. @ TAKUAN

    Qori na vale koya a tara o Qarase, tauyavutaki ena $8 million mai na Ministry of Agriculture. Ke sa tauyavutaki ena butako, ena tini ga ena rusa.

    I was just reading on the Mother Jones article the experiences of other expats who’s been to Fiji before and after the coups.

  47. [T]he censorship of the media … has to do with irresponsible reporting they’ve been doing all these years.

    I haven’t heard that since 1967 Cuba, right after they kicked me out of the country.

  48. What has wife beating got to do with Fiji Water? Please keep some relevancy otherwise don’t show us what you have in your head. Were you beaten once by your hubby or someone?

    It might do everyone some good if we all dig deeper to find out the crux of the political problems in Fiji. Maybe some of you can start here:

  49. “Fiji Women’s Rights Movement director Virisila Buadromo, said that under Commissioner Teleni, battered women seeking police help were increasingly being counselled to commit themselves to Christianity, preferably to the New Methodist Church, to forgive their violent partners and to focus on rebuilding family life.”

  50. to put it in context:
    “The Great Council of Chiefs, the courts and the parliament, core bodies that formerly commanded respect and underpinned Fiji society, have been effectively dismembered, with senior army officers running the remnants.

    Even the Methodist Church, formerly viewed as sacrosanct and the church that almost every ethnic Fijian was by default born into, is under siege, with a government-ordained New Methodist Church established as its rival.

    Last month the military government banned the Methodist Church’s conference, held annually for about 160 years, claiming it would fuel insurrection.

    Then it arrested a dozen prominent church leaders, including the church’s president, the Reverend Ame Tugaue, and general secretary, the Reverend Tuikilakila Waqairatu.

    And paramount chief Ro Teimumu Kepa was arrested for posting a letter on the internet encouraging the people of her Fijian province, Rewa, to assemble for a traditional meeting.

    The Methodist ministers pleaded not guilty to participating in a church standing committee meeting in contravention of the public emergency regulations. Government permission had not been approved for the meeting. A pre-trial hearing is set for September 24 and the full trial for November 19.

    They were accused of breaching martial law that the military government had introduced in April when it abrogated the constitution, sacked the judges, and said it would not hold elections until September 2014. Since April, Fiji’s media has been subject to heavy censorship, which military commander Veraqe (Frank) Bainimarama has said is shifting the focus to “the journalism of hope”.

    The Methodist Church eventually agreed it would not persist with attempting to hold its conference but would continue with a combined annual solevu fundraising by pledges, which usually brings in almost $F1 million ($600,000), crucial for the church’s finances and choir competition, scheduled for today.

    But at the last minute, the authorities withdrew permission for that as well, saying people with political intentions had been influential in planning the choir competition.

    The military government’s secretary for information, Lieutenant-Colonel Neumi Leweni, said the authorities were asking the church to concentrate on the spiritual enhancement of its members “instead of promoting the ambitions of a few politically minded individuals”.

    By contrast, the authorities have granted approval for the New Methodist Church, a rival institution established recently by former Air Pacific employee Atu Vulaono, to hold a crusade at the national sports stadium, which holds up to 20,000 people.

    The evangelistic police commissioner Esala Teleni, a former naval commodore, is Pastor Vulaono’s brother. ”

  51. I love the swaying palm trees and happy snorkelers slideshow above the coup apologist propaganda.

  52. what really, really pisses me off is that the people in Fiji that really need hard foreign currency sales to better their lives are being screwed out of their birthright natural resource (the innocent water) by a handful of greedy, shortsighted idiots that actually believe the part of the world that buys the water can be so easily deceived.

  53. @ TAKUAN

    You must also remember that Fiji Water started business in Fiji in the 90s when there was a democratically-elected government in place after coup 87. In trying to attract foreign investment, Fiji Water was given tax concessions for I think 10 years. Also because selling water was a totally new business concept in Fiji at that time.

    The very person who executed the 1987 coup was the democratically-elected Fiji PM who gave Fiji Water the tax concession. His very ideology for executing that coup was to make indigenous Fijians absolute leaders of Fiji and no other race or ethnicity.

    So if you are pissed off, maybe you need to dig deeper to find out who you really should be pissed off about.

    The current military government is trying to put an end to the institutionalized racism and corruption that took root as a result of coup 1987 and 2000 because the real beneficiaries of those coups were the few elite Fijians and their business friends who masterminded those coups. The ordinary people including indigenous landowners never get to see any real tangible benefit.

    This is why the currently military regime dismantled all the indigenous Fijian institutions because of the corrupt politics that has embedded itself in it. This is why the Methodist church was stopped from holding their annual conference because the church leadership has become highly politicised. Their ministers were actively campaigning for the deposed government during the last election in 2006.

    As I said, one has to dig deep to understand why Fiji is undergoing these turmoils.

    I’m not here trying to justify the current military government. I’m just trying to put into perspective why these things are happening.

  54. Anyone else ever wonder why a litre of water cost two to three times as much as a litre of gasoline?

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