Fiji’s former attorney-general was arrested and charged with abuse of office

Fiji’s former attorney-general Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum has been arrested and charged with one count of abuse of office.

The charge relates to a report by Fiji’s acting supervisor of elections, Ana Mataiciwa, lodged in February, Police Chief of Intelligence and Investigations Sakeo Raikaci said in a statement.

Assistant Commissioner Raikaci said Mr Sayed-Khaiyum would remain in custody overnight and front Suva Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

The charge against him was sanctioned by the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution, he said.

Mr Raikaci asked the public to remain patient while they finished carrying out investigations of “high profile cases”.

Investigators needed time to gather evidence and “rushing the investigation process could hinder the prosecution’s outcome”, he said.

He reiterated the special task force investigating the case was independent and reported directly to his office.

“I have full confidence in their ability to carry out their work according to the law,” he said.

Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum was attorney-general and the minister for economy and climate change in the previous Fijian government which lost power following last year’s election. .

Other officials charged with abuse of office

Last month, Fiji’s former prime minister Frank Bainimarama and former police commissioner Sitiveni Qiliho were arrested and spent a night in custody after also being charged with abuse of office.

They were granted bail and released after pleading not guilty.

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