Home » Uncategorized » Statement on the 3 August 2012 arrest of Dr Mere Samisoni

Statement on the 3 August 2012 arrest of Dr Mere Samisoni

Statement on the 3 August 2012 arrest of Dr Mere Samisoni

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Vanessa Charters

 

Sat, Aug 4, 2012 at 4:29 PM
To: xxxxxxxxxx
Bcc: peterfirkin@gmail.com
 
As my mother Dr Mere Samisoni was going about her business yesterday 3 August 2012, eight police officers and three police dogs stopped her alongside the road in Suva. She was told she was to be escorted to the police station. No reasons were given to her. Before doing so she spoke to her New Zealand legal counsel Peter Williams QC and Heeni Phillips.
Mr Williams QC spoke to the officer and asked why was Dr Samisoni being detained and escorted to the police station. The officer replied he could not give a reason as there was no reason, but had been told to do this by his superiors. From approximately 1.30pm to aproximately 6.45pm last night my mother was detained by the police for questioning.
They confiscated her mobile phone, questioned her about her driving, about threatening a FICAC officer (with whom she had never spoken) and they questioned her about Mr Qarase’s sentencing and whether she had attended it or not. It appears that the military led regime are desperate to retain power and will stoop to creating false allegations to do so. None of what they accused her was at all true.
Alongside this, the State have sought to prevent my mother from getting urgent dental treatment in Australia for a procedure that is not available in Fiji. The State’s dental expert diagnosed my mother without reference to her case history and said her condition could be treated by a root canal procedure, which she has already undergone and which failed to treat the underlying cause. Her condition is already effecting her health. We await the Magistrate’s verdict on 15 August.

That the regime is now targeting my mother is a serious concern for our extended family. The regime knows that my mother will most likely win her seat in the next election and they are doing everything they can to prevent her from standing as a candidate.

My mother is a brave woman. She believes that Fiji deserves a peaceful, prosperous future that is
determined by the people and the rule of law, not by the gun and lawfare. My mother is 74 years of age and cannot rely on the independence of the State or the police to protect her. What is a further disappointment is that a successful indigenous woman from Fiji cannot rely on the governments of New Zealand or Australia for upholding human rights, the rule of law and justice in Fiji.
Vanessa Charters
(Daughter of Dr Mere Samisoni)

16 thoughts on “Statement on the 3 August 2012 arrest of Dr Mere Samisoni

  1. Although there are some of Dr. Mere Samisoni’s actions with which I strongly disagree, I do agree that she has been treated in an inexcusably shabby manner. It is especially inexcusable to prevent her from getting needed medical treatment. She is being harassed in a manner which is probably illegal. Probably, at this stage, her best defense would be widespread publicity so that the dictatorship would be shamed into doing the right thing and stop harassing her since the dictatorship is not concerned with whether or not something is legal.

    Interestingly, she and I are the same age.

  2. I don’t think taking someone in for questioning for no apparent reason is ‘probably’ but damn illegal. I don’t care what she has done in the past because that is no reason to treat her this way.

    The problem is not just Mere because if it can be done to her than it can be done to anyone.

  3. Ratu Vore,

    You are right; by including the work “probably” I understated the seriousness of the situation. And, as you say, nothing that she has done in the past could possibly justify such treatment, nor is she the only one who has been subjected to such treatment.

    Unfortunately, here in the U.S., the authorities also sometimes behave in ways which cannot be excused. Among other things, that undermines the moral authority of the U.S. government to object to abuses of power in other countries. I also find it embarrassing.

  4. Quite obviously, the thugs running our country see an old woman as sufficiently threatening to harass her in true dictatorship style. What we see are appalling human rights violations committed by an extremely vindictive junta. While harassing Mere the regime exposes their weakness, their fears, their insecurity. How desperate must this regime be to indulge in human rights violations while they want to hoodwink the world with their ‘inclusive, free and open’ constitutional consultations?

  5. The dictatorship is hurting itself by mistreating Mere Samisoni. Not only is in inexcusable, it is also a political mistake. Obviously the dictatorship does not understand public relations.

  6. mere samisoni's past actions of funding and supporting the previous coups is finally catching up with her in the old age says:

    mere samisoni’s past actions of funding and supporting the previous coups is finally catching up with her in the old age. You have to pay for your sins on this earth before you expire finally.

  7. Well she did not condone the actions of her daughter who was a homebreaker and carried on an affair with a married man for years and caused a lot of misery.

  8. Some people can only discuss useless gossip because their brains are bereft of any meaningful idea.

  9. “We wish to make it very clear that people in the high office/Business who abuse their power will in the future be required to serve an immediate prison sentence,” said Justice Fernando. says:

    In handing down his sentence Justice Fernando said the court was not prepared to take such cases lightly and it should stand as a lesson not only to Qarase but to others.

    “We wish to make it very clear that people in the high office who abuse their power will in the future be required to serve an immediate prison sentence,” said Justice Fernando.

    “This comment is to serve as notice to any such people that the court is not prepared to regard such offences lightly and that they will not suspend sentences just because the consequences for such a person is severe,” he said.

    “Your actions are not only illegal but against moral values. The punishment that you ought to receive must reflect the breach of public confidence,” he said.

  10. There is a difference between sentencing someone who has been found guilty and harassing someone who has not been found guilty. Mere Samisoni is being harassed. Perhaps at some future date she will be found guilty by a legitimate court, but as yet she has not been and therefore should be left alone as long as she is not violating the conditions of her bail.

    It may be that Qarase’s sentence was reasonable under the circumstances, although I do not know for sure. The independence of the judiciary has obviously been compromised.

  11. Incidentally, I go on jury duty this week. If I am on a jury, it will be for the third time. I would feel much more confident with a 12 person jury, which is traditional here, than with three assessors as is the practice in Fiji.

  12. Mere’s prosecution is just another example of the regime attempting to silence and remove its outspoken opponents.

    Remember that the lonly reason that they created their ridiculous media laws were to provide methods by which they could prosecute those who speak out against them.

  13. mere samisoni's past actions of funding and supporting the previous coups is finally catching up with her in the old age says:

    @Radiolucas

    Those who know famous mere samisoni and her actions in de-stabalising the labor governments of fiji in 1987/…….

    She has to account for her sins.

  14. “Remember that the lonly reason that they created their ridiculous media laws were to provide methods by which they could prosecute those who speak out against them.”

    Would the word “persecute” be more appropriate than “prosecute?”

  15. To “mere samisoni’s past actions of funding and supporting….” One can only conclude from your rediculous comments you are on Bainimarama’s payroll. God forbid Fiji has a democracy because it means you’ll have to go and get a real job!

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