An example for us all
11 September, 2019, 12:15 pm
It was a bright and sunny Monday in the Capital City.
Suva residents lapped up the fine weather.
It was one of those days, just perfect for the masses.
The sunny weather provided a sort of reprieve from the continuous rainy weather that embraced the city just days earlier.
The waterfront, or most of it, along the famous Queen Elizabeth Drive that hugged the Suva peninsula was packed with families.
Besides it was a public holiday as well.
As children enjoyed themselves on the stretch of sand along Nasese, right up to the Suva Point end of the drive, a lone figure walked near the Suva Bowling Club.
Oblivious to the sounds of joy and laughter emanating from a game of touch rugby a few of metres away from her, towards the Police Academy next to Draiba, Satsuki Moriwaki, walked with purpose along the waterfront.
She had a bag, and picked rubbish that littered the waterfront.
She wasn’t being paid for this!
With a hat to protect her face from the sun, jeans and canvas, and a pull over, she attracted the attention of our chief subeditor Sanju Prasad.
She was focused on her task as a group of teenagers ran past her along the beachfront.
What was interesting was the fact that she had journeyed 7306 kilometres from her home in Fukuoka, the capital of Fukuoka Prefecture which sits on the northern shore of Japan’s Kyushu Island.
She is on holiday in Fiji and travels back home early next month. The prefecture is the ninth most populated prefecture in Japan and is believed to be the oldest city there as well.
Ms Moriwaki has taken time out from her holiday plans to assist in cleaning up the Suva waterfront.
“I first started when I saw the sea in Suva,” she said.
“I thought I can help clean the foreshore and beautify it,” she smiled.
While she believes Fiji was a beautiful country, she was saddened by the fact that Fijians were carelessly disposing their rubbish in public places.
This in turn affected the environment.
It was difficult for her to comprehend the fact that there were people who weren’t concerned about the environment at all.
“People should not litter. Many people are littering, both adults and children. It is unbelievable the way people are carelessly throwing rubbish in Fiji.”
Ms Moriwaki said even though her holiday in Fiji was a short one, she did not mind coming down to the foreshore on weekends to pick rubbish.
The 30-year-old, who is visiting Fiji for the first time, said people needed to be educated on the harmful effects of littering.
“In Japan, schools have cleaning events. Students come together and help clean the environment so this instils in them a sense of civic pride from a very young age. You can have something similar in Fiji; everyone needs to help to keep the environment clean.”
This Japanese woman should be an example for us all.
Her commitment and awareness about the environment, and negative impact of littering, will put many Fijians to shame.
Let’s learn from Ms Moriwaki’s selfless attitude and adopt her concern for our environment.
Let’s keep our Fiji clean.
Let’s be responsible today.