Insight 1989. Fiji
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Insight '89 looks at New Zealand's relationship with Fiji, two and a half years on from the coup.
Actuality of Colonel Sitiveni Rabuka declaring Fiji a republic in October 1987. Prime Minister David Lange calls the racial motivation behind the coup 'deplorable.'
Russell Marshall, External Relations Minister says New Zealand was outraged at the overthrow of a democratically elected government but that position with a close neighbour cannot last forever. Non-military aid has resumed although relations are still cool.
Political scientist Rod Alley comments on the speedy change in New Zealand's position towards Fiji.
The issue of the rights of indigenous Fijians is a factor, as is the response of other Pacific nations. Russell Marshall examines the contradictory feelings that have to be resolved. Some Māori supported the coup as a victory for indigenous rights.
Jone Dakavula, spokesman for the Coalition for Democracy in Fiji comments.
Aid agencies have also faced a crisis of conscience in dealing with Fiji. A statement from CORSO is read. Don Clark, a former projects officer, explains why he resigned from CORSO as a result of their position.
Jone Dakavula says the majority of indigenous Fijians have suffered since the coup, which has only benefited an elite minority.
Louise Birkin of CORSO's Pacific projects committee comments on the debate within the organisation. Libby Clements, national coordinator declines to comment.
Dr John Cameron, a former Fiji judge and advisor to Dr Timoci Bavadra, comments (by telephone) on the role of the anti-apartheid organisation HART in failing to condemn racism in Fiji, calling it sickly white liberalism, patronising and offensive.
He is taking legal action against the New Zealand government, alleging it is discriminating in its allegation of scholarships to indigenous Fijians only.
New Zealand aid resumed in 1988, once a civilian government was reinstated in Fiji. Jone Dakavula says some aid is being diverted to the Fiji military.
John Cameron says it has been easy for New Zealand and Australia to take a high moral stand on South Africa, but less so on Fiji where it has greater financial interest.