Letters to the Editor (03) – June 9

A true son of Fiji soccer
As the dust settles at Ratu Cakobau Park with the final of the Fiji FACT between the Babasiga Lions and Delta Tigers this Sunday, if weather permits, there would be a lot of soul searching and chit chat about the legendary star of Fiji and Labasa soccer- Anand Sami.
Sami is a true son of Fiji who has always assisted teams that needed his expertise. His continuous service to assist districts is commendable.
Last year he was with Tavua football and in his short stint he assembled a team that created havoc in the 2017 IDC.
The core of these players appeared in this year’s Fiji FACT and their performance was the talk of the town.
With so much passion for football, Sami has indeed injected a lot of composure, discipline, skills and networking within the same bunch of players who have played for the Northern town previously.
The side looks formidable in attack and defence reflecting the techniques embedded by Sami.
At the moment, he is the heartbeat of all Northern fans. The anticipation is very high and the onus lies on the players to deliver when it matters most.
I am optimistic the Lions would display their best performance in the much-awaited final.
I feel Labasa football as well as FFA must recruit their own product for a brighter future of Fiji soccer. The technical knowledge he possesses is praiseworthy.
By the way, I hope Sami would use his cards correctly so that we could have a sublime finishing and ensuring that we lift the first major title of Fiji soccer.
Let the roaring of lions be heard.
Naveen Dutt

New vice-chancellor
The Fiji Times (7/6/18, Page 7) reported the appointment of Professor Pal Ahluwalia to replace Professor Rajesh Chandra as the new vice-chancellor at USP.
The decision was taken during the 86th council meeting in Nauru.
According to chairman Winston Thomson, he got a wealth of experience.
Prof Ahluwalia is a professor in Post-Colonial studies at the University of Portsmouth at the UK and authored four books to his name.
His research interests are in the area of colonial theories. Undoubtedly, that should suit Pacific countries that were colonised by other empires including Britain and France.
That includes Fiji. Definitely, Post-colonial theories are critical tools to de-myth the myth of colonialism in one’s thinking, let alone its impact.
Prof Ahluwalia could be a good vice-chancellor. However, I feel for our local professors who have been, over the years, labouring and toiling hard in the academic field here in the Pacific.
I think of our very own professors in the likes of Vijay Naidu, Konai Helu, Brij Lal, Steven Ratuva, and some rising academics in the Pacific.
How long will such talented Pacific academics wait for their chance to come?
That could have been a good reward for their research prowess in their own areas of research.
Going for the best is good, but, don’t we have it here in the Pacific?
I believe hiring expatriates could also weaken the spirit and the will of Pacific local academics.
Yes, a high-profile job as this is everyone’s dream after years of research, teaching, writing and consulting. It could be food for thought in the near future.
Savenaca Vuetanavanua
Veiuto, Nasese, Suva

Survival mode
A friend asked his mate how he had started his business and is doing OK.
He said, “In the past I used to go from house to house to clean yards, I used to collect empty drink bottles and sell them.
“I was doing that for a long time.
“I don’t have a very good education and most people will not employ me.
“Then a few years ago the Government gave out grants for people to start small business and I now have a small canteen selling basic things. I sell grog and cigarettes also.”
Here is just one of the many people who made good use of the small grants.
Success is not defined by a million dollars or having a good car and home.
Success is not about you having people employed under you, nor is it about power.
Success is about this kind of person who was living on the streets and made good use of government grants.
He still goes from house to house to cut grass and do labour work because that’s how he started out in life.
His struggle was real.
Allen Lockington
Kava Place, Waiyavi, Lautoka

Power outage
FEA … EFL by another name of late … don’t know which star they have pinned themselves to … seem to think it is their given right to play God and by a wave of the hand … more like flick of a switch, disconnect power to some unfortunate suburbs in good old beautiful Viti, Kashmir, Lautoka being the latest one in that draw!
I just fixed my refrigerator and my TV screen because of the on off, on off power play after the last cyclone.
Come to think of it, I should have put in a claim with that Homes-care scheme that was offered so generously by the Government of the day but I really don’t know what frightened me most, the thought of going to jail for fraud or the snaking endless line of humanity I saw downtown … whichever, put me off.
But back to EFL, got a tad distracted there. Power goes off without notice at 6pm.
Called customer care line around 8pm having estimated I only had enough candle power for another hour. Boo to those show-offs in the neighbourhood with generators, haven’t they heard of COP23, global warming etc?
The customer care agent who first answers tells me “ma’am power will resume in your area at 1am”. Fat load of good that will do me!
What I really wanted to know was, why no notice for such a prolonged period.
I looked outside, no cyclone! What the f@@%!
Needless to say I got cut off. So much for the care bit. Called again and this time was fortunate to have a nice young man explain in a caring tone that work was being carried out in conjunction with WAF and power would be on at 1am.
I thanked him and reminded him of my spoilt refrigerator and large size TV.
I might have also dropped that it was election year. But whatever it was, power was back on within the next 20 minutes.
Thank you EFL. God bless beautiful Viti!
Denise Gibson
Kashmir, Lautoka

Historic moment
After 132 years, the descendants of indentured labourers arrive in Noco in search of stories of rescue and to express gratitude for the rescue and burial of their ancestors.
Turaga na Tui Noco Ratu Isoa Damudamu declares that descendants of all indentured labourers are children of Noco, Rewa.
By the declaration of the Gone Marama Bale na Roko Tui Dreketi Ro Teimumu Kepa on May 5, 2017 in Nabudrau Noco, Rewa that the descendants of the indentured labourers belong to the Vanua of Noco Rewa and will be forever known with the I Cavuti of “Luvendra Na Ratu”.
It was a historic moment that the current and future generations will never forget, as it has given us a new dimension in our beloved country. It was indeed a dream come true that it took us 132 years to find our roots and be accepted as the children of Tui Noco forever.
The historic moment will be honoured and the priceless souvenir to be held close to our hearts forever.
Tui Noco who gave us the title has passed away but the legacy will live on.
Our deepest sympathy and condolence to the family and Vanua of Rewa for we have lost our Tata Levu.
Our sincere gratitude to Sashi Karan and Govind Singh for the initiative that we are all proud of and hope that your vision brings light to our beloved nation.
“Luvendra Na Ratu”, we cannot pay back to the Vanua of Noco Rewa, but our support to the Vanua during this moment will be highly appreciated.
Let us unite and pay our last respects to this great soul who has selflessly accepted us as his own.
Tata Levu we will pray that your soul find the highest abode in the kingdom of Lord.
Rest in peace until we meet.
Raynav Chand

Test matches
The month of June always brings an extra freshness as Test matches form part of the rugby season.
Tonight, in a three-Test battle, the mighty All Blacks host France at Eden Park.
NZ has named a power-packed side to take on the visitors and expect a tough Test match.
The likes of Moody, Taylor, Franks, brothers’ Sam and Luke Whitelock and Scott, Beauden and Jordie Barrett, Squire, Sam Cane, Aaron Smith, Ioane, Crotty, Ben Smith and Brown are expected to play key roles for the high-flying All Blacks.
The Barrett brothers must be complimented for creating history for making the All Blacks starting line-up.
Apart from them, the other “star” players deserve the All Blacks jumper based on the superb performance for their Super Rugby clubs.
Even the reserves Harris, Tu’inukuafe, Fifita, Savea, Perenara, McKenzie and Laumape have been impressive this season.
However, France will be hard nuts to crack as the French showed during the 2011 RWC final when NZ had to dig deep and rely on the boots of Stephen Donald to gift the host nation the Webb Ellis Trophy.
Nonetheless, I can’t wait for some champagne rugby when the match kicks off. All the best to the world’s best rugby team!
Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam
Nadawa, Nasinu

Tigers or Lions
My son asked me out of the two which one will win, Tigers or the Lions.
Since my mother-in-law is for the Tigers and wife is confident of Lions winning, I simply told my son to wait for the showdown at Ratu Cakobau Park.
My son in reply told me that I don’t have the answer because I am a black out.
I had to deal with it because I even couldn’t survive with greens and blues washed down with my tears last weekend.
Gulsher Ali

Lions’ final hurdle
It has been raining dogs and cats and I wonder about the ground conditions at Ratu Cakobau Park.
Recently FFA decided to take the semis to the West because of unfavourable weather conditions and that Ratu Cakobau Park was not playable according to the Nausori Town Council.
I hope that Nausori Town Council has surveyed the ground so that it is in tiptop condition prior to the encounter between the “Lions” and “Tigers”.
Labasa has been the in-form team in the tournament, but I pity the Northerners who have had to travel to and from Labasa for three weeks.
I salute the players, coaching staff and team officials for standing by the team and ensuring that the players’ welfare is well looked after. I also acknowledge those who have financially assisted Labasa and those who made the trip to Churchill Park to provide the extra ounce of lung power to our “Babasiga Lion’s” in the 2-0 win over Nadi.
Let’s hope that Anand Sami can spark some magic from his playing days to inspire the “Lions” to a win.
All the best to the “Lions” and may you stand tall when the final whistle is blown at Ratu Cakobau Park!
Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam
Nadawa, Nasinu

Nightmare at the junction
I wish to add a few thoughts on the congestion that motorists have every morning at the Natabua junction in Lautoka.
With the growing number of people owning cars, every morning is a nightmare.
The people living in Natabua have some comfort because a police officer directs traffic each morning.
But there is still one problem.
There is a beautiful garden made up of rocks that sits in the way right opposite the junction and under the “Welcome to Lautoka” sign.
Every morning hundreds of people come to the bus stop travelling into the city or travelling towards Saweni, Nadi and beyond.
Many times traffic is held up when three or four buses pull up to pick or offload passengers.
The police officer can’t do much.
But may I suggest that the garden be removed and the bus stop that stands near the bridge be relocated back towards the Natabua Seaside Rd.
This, I believe, will ease congestion and inconvenience during the peak periods in the morning.
If someone says that it costs money to put in the garden and it will be wasted if it was removed, then think about the trees that had to die to make way in the name of development.
The garden is made of rocks which is a dead thing.
Remove the garden!
Allen Lockington
Kava Place, Waiyavi, Lautoka

Talking about unity
Sevens rugby builds a sense of brotherhood and that is why the Fiji team is so successful. You may ask yourself this question, why Fiji has so much barrier to brotherhood and progress? The simple answer is to put our racial differences aside and join into a genuine brotherhood
Racial and ethnic hatred is a sin and we need to label it as such. Racism is a sin precisely because it keeps us from obeying God’s command, “love your neighbour as yourself”.
Imagine how dangerous it is for a political party to seek its stronghold not based on ideology or policy strategies, but on ethnicity. I believe the idea of strong national cohesion will be weakened.
It’s time to secure the future by changing the rules of the “old politics” of place and ethnicity to one of inclusion and national patriotism.
We must unite our nation with brotherhood because if we don’t then we leave thousands of our people behind the walls of poverty and only a few will climb the ladder of prosperity.
We have an incredible choice to make Fiji a nation united in genuine brotherhood. I believe we must be loyal to our country and never compromise unity for our own people for political gain.
I believe in the brotherhood of all men because in union there is strength. Having my brother to my left and my brother to my right, Fiji will no doubt make Fiji a strong nation. Let’s create a brotherhood like the sevens team.
Rewa St, Suva

Productivity issue
How does a worker become productive when they are receiving indecent pay and performing precarious work?
Dan Urai

Discipline in school
We have big problems with discipline in schools today. One can find kids in uniform roaming around the Lautoka Bus Station until 10am or until 8pm. Teachers and parents are not allowed to smack the kids. Spare the rod and spoil the child is a thing of the past, but free education is the talk of every school kid.
Let’s be realistic about discipline because the way things are going, very soon I believe the prison population will increase with the young generation. Young kids know that they cannot be punished in school or at home. I believe this human right that is protecting our children from corporal punishment is backfiring.
Narayan Reddy



More Stories