In a lush tropical suburb of the capital, Fiji’s parliamentary complex stands empty awaiting the result of this month’s polls. A year ago, masked gunmen patrolled these padlocked gates. Inside, Fijian rebels pitched their tents and, amidst a blaze of international publicity, George Speight held hostage Fiji’s ﬁrst ever Prime Minister of Indian descent.
The government ofﬁces consequently still stand vacant, with birds busily nesting beneath their roofs. All that bears witness to those tragic events is the unkempt grave of a dead rebel deﬁantly buried by the insurgents on the lawns in front of the debating chamber – a chilling reminder of the fragility of constitutional democracy in Fiji.