Injustice Anthony Gates knows. He probably never thought that his words relayed ever so eloquently as he reigned over his courtroom would one day come back and haunt him AND box him in a corner. Even as he metes out injustice daily and enjoys the thrill of lauding it over the great unwashed it will all come crashing down in an instant. It is simply a matter of time.
So it comes as no complete surprise that we once again expose a regime lauding phony who was (as usual) hysterically lamenting and ridiculing the audacious illegality of "Speight's" coup of 2000, only to then turn around and support the very same perpetrator in the coup of 2006. His pronouncements were wrong then, and they are dead wrong today.
Words, dear boy, words. They have an uncanny way of reappearing when you least expect it.
Take a bow Graham Davis.
IS GEORGE A DEAD MAN WALKING?
by Graham Davis
George Speight is doing a lot of praying on Nukulau Island. He also exercises morning and afternoon and swims in the sea. And he and his fellow prisoners complain that they don't get enough vegetables to eat. We know all this from Speight's close associate.
Colonel Metuisela Mua, who spent 132 days on Nukulau before being released on bail. We also know from Colonel Mua - thanks to a weekend article in the Sunday Times - that Speight doesn't believe his illegal takeover of Parliament was a failure. If there was a failure, then there would be no caretaker government and no change in the Presidency, the Colonel said. In other words, it was all a resounding success because Speight got rid of both Prime Minister Mahendra Chaudhry, and President Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara.
We should all be indebted to Colonel Mua as a defendant in the forthcoming trials of the Speight gang for treason for putting it all so succinctly. This wasn't a failed coup, abortive coup or attempted coup - as all of us in the media keep saying - but a successful coup .. the removal of a legitimate, legally constituted government at gunpoint. The prosecution lawyers will have read all this with interest and not just for its damaging admission of culpability. Because we all got a pretty good idea from the Sunday Times, a piece of what the defence will be when the Speight gang eventually goes into the witness box.
Like a mantra, the defendants will invoke the supremacy of indigenous Fijian interests above all else, including the law. And there will be lots of statements taking the Lord's name in vain. Colonel Mua told Sunday Times reporter Verenaisi Tuvuki-Raicola that political leaders needed to take serious heed of the word of God. Bible says (Isaiah 10:1): "Woe to those who make unjust laws!". It was a piece of self-serving nonsense which would have made real Christians choke on their breakfast madrai.
As sure as the sun rises over Nukulau, Speight and the other defendants will also try to share the blame. They are after all facing charges that carry the death penalty and will finger everyone they can in the hope of implicating many senior Fijians that the authorities will think twice about singling them out for punishment. Curiously - given the circumstances - Speight has specifically deigned to clear Police Commissioner Isikia Savua from any involvement in the putsch. We might all have done the same were we in custody, had a craving for vegetables and wanted to keep on the right side of the law. But others definitely won't be so lucky and this is the part the country is really looking forwrd to - aside from the smile being wiped off George's face.
This is a man who must not be allowed to stand in the coming elections under any circumstances. Never mind the incredulity abroad to the stories now appearing about Speight's intending candidacy. For Fiji citizens of all races, the notion of this gun-toting goon donning the mantle of a democrat is simply too perverse to contemplate. It's beyond the pale, just like Georgey Porgy himself, who'd do well to reflect before his trial on that other great biblical passage: "By thy acts ye shall be judged." At his daily devotions, let's hope he prays for forgiveness rather than just invoking God's blessing on his misguided endeavours.
Anyone who crossed Speight's path before he shot to international fame, and I had the dubious privilege of briefly doing so, will recall a foul-mouthed viavialevu, trousers (not sulu) freshly pressed, mobile phone constantly at hand and boasting of the next big deal. Then, with his dreamed-of millions beyond his reach, he jumped on the bandwagon of indigenous rights, pointed a gun at the head of an elected Prime Minister, forced Fiji's founding father from the Presidency and trashed the country's economy and reputation. Good one, George. A great platform to take to the nation. Talk about self-delusion !
Speight's legacy is Fijians without jobs. Fijians without money to pay school fees. Fijians forced into crime and prostitution. Parliament was turned into a doghouse as the stupid and misguided celebrated their great victory with an orgy of feasting and sex. And in their drunken self-righteousness, Fijians took the lives of other Fijians . not kai idia, kai loma, or kai valagi, but the taukei ni vanua. Well kiddo, the party's over and its comeuppance time in the courts.
It's also comeuppance time in the vanua. Because you don't remove the Tui Nayau from the Presidency and take his daughter hostage without paying a heavy price. Military officers on the vessel that took Speight to Nukulau relish telling the story of how he cried when they taunted him by saying they were taking him to Tubou prison on Lakeba. For he knows what awaits him in Lau.
But the truth is, George is no longer safe anywhere in Fiji as the bati wait patiently to bite back. One military officer told me that if he does go to jail, he'll be killed inside. And if he's freed, he'll be killed on the streets. Either way, said this officer, Speight is a dead man walking. So right now, he'd better be praying hard and fast.
Graham Davis can be contacted on "firstname.lastname@example.org"