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Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Letters to the Editor:

Commit, give, reach for the sky

WOW! We Fijians can be proud of the news that a son of Fiji has created history by being employed as the orderly for Prince William and his wife, the Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton. (FT 7/1)

We are told that apart from his responsibilities of having to be the chauffeur, and arranging and planning of logistics, he is also in charge of Prince William's wardrobe.

This news should also encourage our Fijian sons and daughters serving in the British Army to commit to their duties, give it their all and reach for the sky.

We have removed the Queen from our Fijian currency notes but this appointment kind of tells us that the British monarchy does not mind.


Rush and respect

GOING to Suva to work everyday, one can see the number of people waiting at the Nausori minibus stand every morning waiting for transport.

As a minibus nears the crowd, people start running towards the oncoming vehicle making sure to be one of those that gets in to have a seat while sometimes the driver has to stop to prevent any accident.

As for myself, someone who was taught to have respect for the elders during my childhood days, I sometimes have to leave respect aside and jump in the minibus first leaving the old ones and the ladies behind just to make sure I don't get to work late.

This also occurs in the afternoons from Suva when people knock off from work to go home. It saddens me sometimes to see ladies and the overweight people got left behind by the faster ones who get in the mini bus first.

It is like the saying survival of the fittest.

Could the LTA or someone from transport make some arrangements with a bus company to provide express services for us who travel to work in Suva everyday. That would make things much more easier for us.

Also no one will be complaining for being late to work every morning because of no transport.

I wish someone from the government does something for the taxpayers of this beloved country so no one will be terminated from their workplace because of coming to work late just because of the excuse of no transport.


Stop talking, keep digging

ONCE, a colleague from Ireland, raised around Mombasa, had a jog around our village and felt as he was back in his youth in Mombasa. It's just the feel of the place, he said. I told him that our legend connected us to East Africa and that kind of settled the matter for him.

Many of us Fijians also believe in that feel. Some though, on the side of the archaeologists will say there's no proof, but I believe it was passed on through generations and has some truth.

Too often we readily believe the archeologists, but I reckon we give them too much credit. They take their science too narrowly, even saying there was no Biblical King David, someone so pivotal to the history of Israel and indeed Christendom.

Archaeologists have been proven wrong, such as the city of Nineveh which they debunked. A French diplomat, working from the Bible and old transcripts was able to identify the location and dug up the city virtually intact.

Perhaps we should tell the archeologists to keep their mouths shut and keep digging as much under the sand is still unknown.

As for most of us, human history should not be decided by pieces of pottery, and the Lapita people notwithstanding, there's very strong feel and belief we came from East Africa.


Rain and the road

THE family ride around Suva after dinner on Sunday evening would have cost me all four wheels had it not been for the extra pair of eyeballs I had requested fixed on the road, sensing potholes.

On your right!, there there that one, what's that noise from the tyres?, etc.

Left left left. Bang! (I hit this one).

Those pairs of eyes turned my way and yeah, then don't shout when I hit potholes! went she.

And then the rain! OK, that's life and we all are pretty used to that.

Those new guys fixing Suva roads are the most welcome sight this new year.

Believe me, come 2014 elections, if there are no potholes on our roads, I'd sleep through the voting days, or maybe read a book instead.


Appalling service

I VISITED the WAF head office at Center Point the other day and it is appalling to see the customer service provided.

Firstly, one has to look for parking and some customer had to park by the busy roadside where often bigger vehicles have to negotiate tight angles to avoid scratching other parked vehicle paints. Secondly because of the number system the service officers often had to consult each other as to which number was being served and which number they have to call out. In my one odd hour of observation, not once the service officers called out the correct number to serve the customer often leading to confusion and the possibility of a scuffle breaking out as a result. Can WAF please look into this urgently perhaps to relocate where adequate parking space is available and use the computer numbering system as seen in banks and FNPF.


Nadera music

IN reply to Mr Savenaca Vakaliwaliwa letter to FT on 7/1/13, I totally agree with him. It's so delightful to see Nadera youths play to beats exactly like Fiji Police Band.

I spent my Christmas and New Year's Eve in New Zealand which was the worst ever and the most boring Christmas in my entire life. But getting back on New Year's Day and seeing the Nadera youths welcoming 2013 in style was really amazing. No matter what people say there's no place like Fiji.

Here we celebrate festive season in a style whereas in overseas country most people celebrate their festive season in front of TV with a beer in one hand and remote control on the other.

Nadera youths are so brilliant. I urge people to come and see this act but from a distance or else get ready to bath with the youths.

Happy new year to all the readers of this column. God bless Fiji.


Count our blessings

IF we counted our blessings, we will find that a major contributor of blessings to modern Fiji is Britain; let alone bygone days.

Britain contributes through employment in her majesty's security forces, (Army, Navy, Police and Air Force) and in sports, rugby union (both codes) mainly, and there is a promise that rugby league will be recruiting from Fiji after the 2013 World Cup. As a bonus,family members (wives and children) get employed and educated once they relocate to Britain.

Our sons and daughters actually earn a lot of money there, at least much more than they would if they remained in Fiji, and they send money home, to build and buy homes in villages, towns and cities, to support and sustain parents and relatives, to educate their next of kin; and thus develop our lot.

Our appreciation to Britain is huge and should remain in our memories.

Let's not forget that Britain has been a major buyer of our sugar from time immemorial.

Many modern Fijians owe their standing today, largely from sugar earning by their parents and grandparents.

When we count those blessings from Britain's monarch, government and people, I really cannot understand the concerted effort to remove Britain from our memories.


Protect both

GOVERNMENT should regulate import of items that are manufactured locally. We need to regulate import on certain items in order to protect our local investors and prevent closure of these factories.

I hope the Ministry of Trade prepares a list of items or invites submissions from manufacturers whose businesses are affected by cheap overseas imports so that relevant and astute measures could be taken up in order to protect both the investor and the employees.


Royal delight

WHAT a delight and a boost for the people of Fiji that one of our boys is right next to the royals as a trusted member of Buckingham Palace. Our soldiers have been serving all over the world. Fiji has been on the world map and will always be there right up among the elite in the SAS, the British army, the Navy Seals, the US army, the French Foreign Legion and many more. Thank you to the men and women who represent our country in all the walks of life.


Drive alerts

WHY don't the Fiji National Blood Services unit work with the three mobile phone companies to send out alerts via text messages regarding blood drives. These alerts can be sent to all the customers registered in the area the blood drive is being held. This is more effective than just sending it to us regular donors. Just a thought.


Flag contest

I AM excited to see who will win the best Fiji Flag competition. Well the argument to change or not to change Fiji's flag is useless because once the directives comes from the government it is done. So no point arguing. As permanent secretary of PM puts it (FT 3/1/2013) we have a new constitution, new airline brand name, new currencies and having a new flag that includes things found in Fiji would definitely make a Fiji a new country. So let's forget all that has happened in the past both good and bad and let us all make a new start, a new beginning. Let the year 2013 be a blessed and fruitful year for all the Fijians.


Week 4

AS we in Saru and Tawatawa Lautoka enter the fourth week without electricity our frustration continue to grow. Every morning we begin our day anticipating to see at least some repair work being carried out by FEA workers but to no avail - maybe we in the village are not deemed as important beings or has the momentum in carrying out repair works died after the festive season?


Truth will prevail

SADLY. Respectfully. Natural justice was not allowed to take its fair course.

The Ministry of Education, and indeed, the PS Education included, prematurely, via his aired statement, acted in haste by confirming zero marks thus handing down an almost death sentence after eight years of primary and five years of secondary education; parents' sacrifices through years of toil in blood, sweat and tears.

In this day and age the Ministry of Education acted purely on the grounds based on an anonymous caller's so-called 'tip-off.

In my view, our hardworking Prime Minister should institute a Commission of Enquiry.

The students concerned must be given their full right to be heard.

Their teachers over the years must be interviewed.

All this must be carried out in the name of justice without fear, favor or malice.

The decision by the students concerned to go on a hunger strike is understandable.

Fear not! The truth, in the final analysis, must be allowed to prevail.

You are thanked for your courage.


New year horror

I WRITE to express my concern over the New Year fever, which is affecting public transport users.

Thursday night (03/0) at around 9pm; after a good day's work and evening gym session, I had a warm shower and was on my way home like all others on the bus, looking forward to a warm meal, spending some time with my family and a good night's sleep.

As I boarded the Vatuwaqa bus that goes to Nabua, I was unaware of the surprise that was in store for me in Raiwaqa. In fact, all the three dozen or so passengers were all caught unaware when we were splashed with two bucket-loads of stinking ditch water! Imagine our horror!

The last thing ordinary citizens travelling by public transport need at the end of a long day is to be abused in such a manner.

The driver stopped at the Raiwaqa Police Post and informed the police officer on duty about what had happened. Hopefully the officers managed to find the culprits.

My humble plea to people who engage in such forms of new year celebration is to find a better form of expressing their joy and welcoming the new year.

Why not get together and as a group go around the community, collecting all the garbage and making creative recycle art. You can sell the end product and make money and at the same time, keep the area clean.

Believe me, the last thing we ordinary people boarding the bus in the evenings need is to be splashed with ditch water. I mean, if we were so desperate, we'd all get off and line up to take turns dipping into the drains and ditches around Raiwaqa.

I hope the authorities concerned look into this serious matter.


Top cat

THE discovery of a cat used to transport items including mobile phones and saw blades into prison by authorities at a jail in Brazil represents intelligence at another level.

Our prisons may contain the best of surveillance systems and most highly trained officers but it's the least expected agents who do the most damage.

Whether it knew what it was doing or not, this cat is one of the most expensive and intelligent agents discovered.

This cat will definitely become one of the most valued agents discovered in 2013, perhaps one our very own James Bond may want to train with.

Floyd Robinson

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