AFTER 17 years in the Fiji Police Force, Sergeant Lepani Navutu said his proudest moment was winning the inaugural Fijian Host of the Month Award.
Recognised by international guests and travelling locals for his exemplary service, the Nakorotubu, Ra, native said, it was a humbling experience.
"This award means a lot to me because it comes from the people that we serve every day," the Border Police Unit officer said.
Sgt Navutu received a grocery shopping voucher worth $250 donated by the AON Excellence in Tourism Awards committee, dinner for two at the Sheraton Fiji Resort courtesy of Starwood and transfers to and from the resort courtesy of Tourism Fiji.
Tourism and Civil Aviation permanent secretary Elizabeth Powell said Sgt Navutu received numerous accolades from visitors transiting through the international gateway.
"Lepani had some amazing comments from a very grateful traveller. He was able to recover lost valuables that were left behind at the departure lounge. And there were also comments from other travellers about his politeness and friendliness and the excellent service he provided," she said.
Border Police Unit commanding officer assistant superintendant Pita Keni said he was proud of Sgt Navutu's achievement.
"This is something we have instilled in our men. While they are tasked with being vigilant at all times, they have also been challenged to go out of their way to assist travellers at the airport," he said.
Police Commissioner Brigadier General Ioane Naivalurua took time while visiting the Western Division to congratulate Sgt Navutu yesterday afternoon.
The Fijian Host program launched on September 1, 2012, is an initiative of the Tourism Ministry, designed to raise customer service levels at the Nadi International Airport and to acknowledge the outstanding efforts of individuals working at the tourist gateway.