Major General Sitiveni Rabuka, who led two military coups in Fiji, has cast doubt over whether the elections in Fiji will go ahead in 2014 as scheduled.
The former Fijian Prime Minister was the keynote speaker at the University of Canterbury's Democracy in the Pacific conference today.
He said he hoped the elections would go ahead.
"But that hope is not based on very good grounds," he said.
"When we talk about democracy in the Pacific, one size does not fit all. Military has always had a presence in the Fiji culture. We think of militant ways of changing things, rather than waiting for the next elections.
"It may be that we have corporate cooperation in 2014 where together the government and the military keep tabs on our civil military relations to prevent things from breaking down again, as it has happened many times in Fiji."
Rabuka said he visited the deconstruction this week of Christchurch's QE2 Park, the venue for the 1974 Commonwealth Games where he was a decathlete and captain of the Fiji team.
He passed on his sympathy to the people of Christchurch because of the earthquakes.