Strict bail for former Fiji PM Bainimarama and Qiliho

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Fiji’ former Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama and suspended Police Commissioner Sitiveni Qiliho have been released on bail by the Suva’s Magistrates Court today.

Resident Magistrate Seini Puamau ordered the two be released on a $10,000(US$5,000) bail with two sureties, they were also ordered to not interfere with prosecution witness.

Both Bainimarama and Qiliho have been ordered not to leave the country and had their travel documents confiscated in Court today.

Magistrate Puamau also ordered the two accused not change their residential address and to report to the nearest Police Station, once a month.

Bainimarama and Qiliho had pled not guilty to one count of abuse of office each.

It is alleged that in his capacity as the Prime Minister, Bainimarama directed the then police Commissioner sometime in July 2020 to terminate an ongoing investigation.

It is alleged that the suspended Police Commissioner had directed the Director of the Criminal Investigations Department then, Serupepeli Neiko and another officer to terminate the investigation.

The charges relate to a complaint laid with the police by the University of the South Pacific in July 2019 in relation to the activities of former staff members of the university.

Both accused have opted for their cases heard in the Magistrates Court.

The matter has been adjourned to 11 May 2023 for further disclosures and Pre Trial Conference.

Outside court Bainimarama said: “I am going to fight this charge. Not only for my reputation, for democracy, for all Fijians, and of course for the Constitution.”

SOURCE: FIJI LIVE/PACNEWS