Revealing answers from Roko Ului Mara in this interview with Radio New Zealand's 9 to Noon.
In it he says he can see now the 2006 coup was wrong but he, like others, felt it was right at the time.
"I believed in what we set out to do. I believed the cause was noble, although the way we conducted it was wrong. I believed that we needed a clean-up campaign to remove corruption that was in politics and business.
"I believed that racist laws that were about to be introduced by the SDL government would be a disaster for Fiji. I still believe those things."
Mara also talks about the loss of faith senior officers came to have in Frank Bainimarama and his leadership and how he allowed Aiyaz Sayed Khaiyum to shape and influence the direction the illegal government was going.
Mara's information confirms what Coupfourpointifve has been reporting for some time. As recent as March this year, we were contacted by a senior officer who wanted out and who revealed then that Bainimarama had lost the plot - and support.
Mara says it started to happen in 2008. Bainimarama changed about then and became more interested in his own position and took to ignoring the Military Council, preferring to listen to Khaiyum instead, who he says was out to dislodge the Council.
Asked why it took him so long to break away, Mara says he was hoping things would change but was forced to realise last year that Bainimarama was no longer interested in what his senior officers had to say.
Quote: "We were of no use to him."
As reported previously by Coupfourpointfive, Mara says Bainimarama has lost the loyalty of the troops and he keeps himself surrounded by 50 guards and a select few who do his dirty work.
Quote: "The only threat to Fiji now is the military threat. There's no outside threat."
Mara doesn't discount troops turning on Bainimarama but stopped short of saying it would definitely happen, saying going on previous trends it has been known to.
He denied participating in any of the abuse of citizens at QEB, saying he ran the third infantry but Bainimarama bypassed him, going straight to the men himself to get them to do things.
national/programmes/ ninetonoon/audio/2489483/ colonel-tevita-mara's- defection.asx