Girmitya's. [Source: File Photo]
PAP Leader Sitiveni Rabuka continues to get blasted for claiming that Indo-Fijians left Fiji willingly after his coup of 1987 that devastated Fiji.
This outpouring of feelings by the descendants of Girmitiyas and others comes after the numerous reasons put forward by Rabuka on why Indo-Fijians mass migrated after his 1987 coup.
In what many are calling an insult to injury, Rabuka in his latest comments says no one was tied to or shoved onto planes to leave Fiji forcefully.
A vocal descendant of the Girmitya, Roshika Deo says the coup and the inhumane treatment of Indo-Fijians left many with not much of a choice.
“The circumstances were such that people were forced to leave. When we say that people left for greener pastures, we have to be really careful to take into account what was prevalent at that time, during the coup, after the coup, and even decades after the coup that is forcing Girmitya descendants to leave the country.”
SODELPA Leader, Viliame Gavoka refutes Rabukas claims and says no coup is justified.
“There is no way you can justify a coup – no way. And for him to say that it has benefited the very people who suffered is quite weird I just don’t understand the logic behind that.”
Unity Fiji Party Leader, Savenaca Narube stresses that the past coups cost Fiji millions of dollars, and entrenched horrific memories in the minds of all Fijians.
“The bottom line is the coup is painful for everybody, we are paying the full price of it and we’ll continue to do so for a long time. I think for me that is the most important thing.”
Fiji Labour Party Leader Mahendra Chaudhry refused an on-camera interview directing FBC news to an earlier FLP social media statement.
He says the coups are also a sobering reminder of the need to build greater understanding and trust between the two major components of our society.
He adds that tens of thousands of people, feeling unwanted and facing blatant discrimination, have left Fiji as a result of the political instability caused by Rabukas coups.
In a strange twist of irony, Rabuka was in India through a privately funded trip over the past week, exactly 143 years after the arrival of the first Girmitiyas to Fiji and on the 35th anniversary of his coup which led to what many call the second Girmit or exodus of Indo-Fijians.