Politics

What’s happening in this photograph? Rabuka explains

A photograph of  Sitiveni Rabuka with Voreqe Bainimarama had social media buzzing about the encounter between the current and former prime ministers.

Calvin Prasad

September 19, 2017 4:32 pm

The picture was taken in Perth, Australia in 1994 and was part of Rabuka’s collection, first posted on social media a month ago by a member of his media team.

The Social Democratic Liberal Party leader had a Q & A session with Newswire today and explained the origins of the photograph.

“The PM [Bainimarama] was a subordinate officer of mine at the time…we are shown in the picture here getting a new patrol boat from Australia…we went over with the then Captain Bainimarama, who was the Commander of the Fiji Navy, to take delivery.”

Rabuka explained that the new patrol boat was given to Fiji by Australia under the Pacific patrol boat program.

“We got taken off the program because of the coup in 1987 and it wasn’t until after the 1992 General Elections that we came back onto the Pacific patrol boat program, and instead of the original four offered, we were given three.”

The former Commander of the military said the program involved Fiji and some other south-east Asian countries,  with Australia being the major donor.

SODELPA Leader Major-General Sitiveni Rabuka took part in a Q & A session with Newswire at the party headquarters in Suva today.
SODELPA Leader Major-General Sitiveni Rabuka took part in a Q & A session with Newswire at the party headquarters in Suva today.

The Newswire Q & A session with Rabuka will be available online soon.

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