Former Fiji Military Officer Appointed GCC Chair

Former military officer and Tailevu chief Ratu Viliame Seruvakula, who testified against Fiji Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka alleging that he incited the 2000 mutiny at the QEB Barracks—a charge that the latter was later cleared of—has been appointed Chairman of the Great Council of Chiefs.

The Kubuna confederacy nominee, who was 3FIR Commanding Officer at the time of the 2000 coup and reportedly opposed it, was appointed on the first day of the two-day GCC meeting at Lagoon Resort today.

He amassed the most votes of 27 over Burebasaga confederacy nominee Tauk3i Navo Ratu Meli Saukuru (10) and Tovata’s Ratu Jone Lalabalavu (8), as the only nominees submitted to contend for the council’s chairmanship. Ratu Meli, by vote count, assumes the Deputy Chair’s role, and Ratu Jone, second Deputy Chair.

Addressing the media following the completion of day one of discussions today, Seruvakula described the role as “challenging” but one he was looking forward to taking on.

Seruvakula presides as Chair for a term of three years, and stand to be re-elected for a second term as provided for under the iTaukei (GCC) Affairs 2024.

Seruvakula resigned from the military in 2006 and worked with the United Nations Peace and Security division.

The Fijian Elections Office supervised and assisted the voting process. There was one invalid vote registered.

The meeting proper ensued beginning with the review of the minutes of the last meeting and discussed the laws governing the council’s meeting.

The GCC reconvenes tomorrow.

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