The National – Wednesday, December 15, 2010
MELANESIAN Spearhead Group partner Fiji has congratulated Sam Abal on his elevation as deputy prime minister, the Fiji Sun newspaper reported yesterday.
It said Fiji’s minister for foreign affairs and international cooperation Ratu Inoke Kubuabola had sent a congratulatory letter last week to Abal, who had since become acting prime minister, saying he was looking forward “to actively working with you to further enhance and strengthen the existing cordial relations between our two countries”.
Kubuabola added: “On the occasion of your assumption of the office of the deputy prime minister, I wish to extend, on behalf of the government and people of Fiji, our warm congratulations.”
Kubuabola served as Fiji’s high commissioner to PNG in 2002-05.
In late 2005, he attempted to handle the problem of Fijian security guards, some of whom were accused of being mercenaries, operating illegally in Bougainville. The incident embarrassed the Fijian government and threatened to strain relations between the two countries.