The Fiji Police Force will not condone Police brutality and the use of excessive force will be thoroughly investigated, says Ratu Inoke Kubuabola.
The Minister for Defence, in response to a question on Police brutality by SODELPA MP Mosese Bulitavu, said that under the Fiji Police Act Cap 85, the Fiji Police had the powers to arrest, interrogate and detain an individual suspected of committing an offence.
Ratu Inoke said in circumstances where the Fiji Police were faced with strong resistance and violent actions from drunkards, drug paddlers, violent robbers and many more the Fiji Police would institute reasonable force as a means of “Self Defence” to counter and deflate the situation.
“We should not forget that there are cases whereby Police officers are being brutally assaulted and seriously injured in the exercise of their duties.”
Ratu Inoke said there were 118 cases of Resisting Arrests in 2017 alone.
“My Ministry can assure every Fijian that the Fiji Police Force will not condone Police brutality and anyone found guilty of using excessive force will be thoroughly investigated to ensure that justice is served,” the minister said.
In 2017, Ratu Inoke said there were 18,153 cases registered and only nine cases were classified as ‘Police Brutality’ cases, which have been registered and are in the court system.
He said the other cases included domestic violence and other assault cases.