PRIME Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama has hit out on the use of excessive force by law enforcement officers when arresting criminals or suspects.
Referring to the assault on the five escapees from Naboro prison last month, Commodore Bainimarama said: "There has been some adverse publicity about the use of excessive force in the recapture of these five escapees. We cannot condone this and we don't. A small group of hardened criminals broke out of Naboro prison and proceeded to terrorise the community, causing significant trauma to honest Fijians who feared for their own and their family's safety.
"We are all outraged that this happened and are doing everything we can to investigate the circumstances. But these criminals were quickly recaptured before they were able to commit serious acts of violence on ordinary Fijians," he said.
He says men and women in uniform do their jobs in the most testing circumstances.
"They and those they serve deserve our support in their efforts to maintain law and order. They work tirelessly to protect Fijians and visitors to Fiji alike."
Speaking at the Divisional Crime Prevention carnival in Lautoka, on Saturday, he said the security forces' effort to recapture the criminals was a clear message that they would not tolerate any breakdown of law and order or any situation that put the health and safety of the people at risk.