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Ratu Epenisa Cakobau remains in police custody

June 8, 2018 1:50 am

Police Commissioner Brigadier General Sitiveni Qiliho has confirmed to FBC News Bau’s high chief Ratu Epenisa Cakobau remains in custody and will be released once they finish questioning him.

Ratu Epenisa and several others were taken in for questioning after information was received that they were adamant to continue the installation ceremony despite the decision being called off by the Native Lands Commission yesterday evening.

Qiliho says they requested the RFMF to provide armed protection in Bau Island this morning when they took Ratu Epenisa Cakobau into custody.

He adds they requested the RFMF’s assistance in the event of any confrontation with traditionally armed warriors who had already arrived on the island.

The Police Commissioner says they maintained the lead role in the operation and the few armed soldiers were present for police protection as they’re an unarmed force.

He adds they also had martial arts trained police officers as part of the team that was deployed to the island.

Meanwhile, Ratu Epenisa was supposed to be installed as the Vunivalu of Bau on the island today, however, the NLC instructed the Police to stop it.

NLC Chair Ratu Isireli Vananalagi says they received a letter from Ratu Joji Kadavulevu Cakobau, his elder brother, disputing the installation.

Vananalagi says the NLC met with the four chiefly households of the Tui Kaba clan to try and resolve their differences but no agreement was reached.
Vananalagi says a protocol was breached in the selection of proposed candidate Ratu Epenisa and the Turaga Na Roko Tui Bau has also withdrawn from his duties in the installation process.