Letters to the Editor – February 19, 2020

Meli Derenalagi is tackled by an Australian defender in their last pool game during the HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series Hamilton 7s in New Zealand last year. The picture was chosen as the Photograph of the Year during the Fiji Sports Awards night on Saturday. Picture: RAMA

Shot of the year

Veteran photographer Rama stole the limelight as his hard work earned him the Photograph of the Year Award. Rama had captured lanky Nawaka lad Meli Derenalagi being tackled by Australia’s Nick Malouf in Hamilton last year during Fiji’s last pool match which our boys won after dumping Australia (26-19). Yesterday’s The Fiji Times ran an article titled “Rama the great” and our journalist Paulini Curuqara did a wonderful job in presenting to the readers Rama’s journey with The Fiji Times and I salute our veteran photographer for standing out with an experienced CV. As Paulini mentioned, “Rama climbed through the rungs, from the era of processing films in the dark room to produce the best pictures, to the digital age.” He has seen it, he has done it and this is the reason why our evergreen photographer continues to shine. His hard work and dedication must be commended and so must be his vigour and enthusiasm. Rama’s message, “Be strong, work hard and strive for the best”, must be stressed in life. Vinaka Rama! Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam Nadawa, Nasinu

Use of gadgets

I was told that a village somewhere in Fiji is thinking of banning the use of gadgets in the morning. The reason is for the people to do their chores because they have noticed the amount of time people spend on social media. Food is not prepared on time, washing not done, many other things are not done properly. Sometimes even the food is burnt. For me I have burnt many dinners so I speak from experience. Allen Lockington Kava Place, Lautoka

VPL fixture

The VPL match played between hosts Nadi and visitors Rewa at Prince Charles Park on Sunday went well for the visitors who won the fixture by 1-0. In doing so they returned home three points richer. The win has also put Rewa on the top of the league table along with Lautoka. However, Lautoka currently leads the race with better goal average. To me Rewa looked the better side as they kept attacking the Nadi goalmouth time and again and enjoyed better ball possession throughout. Nadi only came up firing in the second spell. The green machine could not match the style and combination displayed by the Delta Tiger boys in this encounter. When a minute or so of injury time was remaining, Rewa was awarded a penalty. The kicker made no mistake in planting the ball at the back of the net. A few seconds later the final whistle was blown by the referee. The referee had to be escorted as angry fans tried to pounce on him. It was disappointing to see no uniformed police present in the park. This is not good as things could have turned uglier. I hope the soccer bodies running the show would not allow such an incident to happen again. Suresh Chand Nadi

OHS standard

I believe the Leader of Opposition Sitiveni Rabuka has raised his concerns over the use of the old Navua Hospital (FT 17/02) citing non-compliance with occupational health and safety (OHS) standard. I believe the Opposition Leader’s concern is obviously politically motivated because if we observe carefully, OHS standards are widely compromised mainly because of the lack of understanding of the nature of OHS. Compliance is a huge problem especially at small workplaces and businesses around the country. Small businesses are unable to properly deal with OHS because they lack knowledge of laws and hazards and they tend to put productivity ahead of health and safety because of slim profit margins and the need to have programs that are simple and cheap. Also, employers in small workplaces don’t comply with OHS standards because most are not unionised and have little or no collective presence. Our OHS legislation and policies tend to be designed for large unionised workplaces in mind so if the Opposition Leader wants to really talk OHS standards, then he needs to address it in a much more wider inclusive context involving every workplace around the country. When we talk about OHS standards, politics needs to be put aside! Simon Hazelman Rava Estate, Savusavu

Sports awards

I refer to the letter by Sukha Singh (FT 17/02) regarding why Fiji Football Association did not nominate anybody for the Sportsman of the Year Award. I believe the simple reason is Fiji FA’s own awards night is top priority with a distinguished overseas chief guest to be invited. Fiji FA will keep congratulating other sporting bodies such as rugby union that represents us on the world stage. A new national coach has been welcomed from abroad, but realistically we will keep dreaming, dreaming and dreaming to see our national team on the world scene. Raymond Singh Golf Links, Lautoka

Soccer upset

Labasa fans vented their frustrations on Sunday as the Babasiga Lions were beaten by a spirited Nasinu outfit coached by former Labasa goalie Tagi Vonolagi. It took 79 minutes for Nasinu’s Jone Naraba to break the deadlock and while Nasinu fans celebrated, Labasa fans left Ratu Cakobau Park bitterly. Well, it’s all part of the learning process and if Labasa is serious about playing in the O-League then it must regroup and start winning games. Labasa won the IDC title beating Suva and then won the CVC title beating Ba but the Lions slipped at home against Suva and then Nasinu added a little dent to our hopes of playing in the O-League. However, not all is lost and I’m sure that Labasa will bounce back against Rewa this Saturday. Navua did well to hold Suva while Rewa upset Nadi at Prince Charles Park. This week’s VPL produced some stunners and I commend The Fiji Times for promoting soccer through Goal Fiji. Trust me it’s an edition worth reading! Finally, the clash between United and Chelsea produced an upset as the visitors dumped the hosts (2-0) to reduce the deficit (top four position) to three points. Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam Nadawa, Nasinu

Fiji Hindi

I write in support of Mohammed Imraz Janiff’s letter (FT 17/02) on the above subject. There has been much debate on this issue and I think Mr Janiff has brilliantly elaborated what ‘Fiji Hindi’ would sound like in a formal tone. In my personal view, I think it is OK to use Fiji Hindi when conversing person to person, however, on a professional level it sounds informal and unimpressive. All these years there was usage of “shudh Hindi” across all radio platforms and no one said a word, now a sudden change in the dialect has caused so much difference in views and opinions of people. What was the need really is what I fail to understand. Maybe it was just to cause a public commotion? Thank you Mr Janiff for the “no nonsense” words. Raynav Chand Nakasi

Language issue

I think that Dewan Chand (FT 18/02) has answered his own question, although a scholarly tone on the evolution of the Hindi language would be interesting, since Hindi speakers have settled worldwide: there must be many versions. In the early ’90s I took my visiting father to Navua market where he tried to converse with the stallholders using the standard Hindi (and Urdu) in which he was fluent and had a hard time making himself understood. All languages quite naturally change over the years. In her book ‘Blooming English’, Kate Burridge, the chair of Linguistics at the Monash University, covers a fascinating and enjoyable history of the English language — occasionally referring to other languages. Speaking of word endings she says Chinese used to have lots of endings, but these have now gone. Hindi, on the other hand, lost a good many of its endings but then invented a whole heap of new ones. So even standard Hindi has evolved and is still evolving. Mr Chand is undoubtedly correct when he attributes the origins of Findi to the early indentured labourers — and more power to them, too! In a strange land, far from all that they knew of life, a major concern would have been communication. Fiji Hindi is surely, as Mr Chand says, ‘a beautiful evolution’ and is certainly not something to be ashamed of. Sue Cauty Pacific Harbour

Soccer standard

The 7-0 thrashing of Lautoka FC by a PNG club in Vanuatu is a fair benchmark of Fiji soccer standard. One word perfectly describes the occasion. EMBARRASSING. Ilaitia Bose Suva

Walking out

Watching the Opposition walkout of Parliament yesterday, I just uttered to myself, ‘Isa, ratou sa baci lako!’ Wise Muavono Balawa, Lautoka

Year of freebies

I predict that the year 2022 will be a year of freebies. Mohammed Imraz Janif Natabua, Lautoka

Crime rate

In Vanuatu, the crime rate is very low. No robberies, no housebreaking, no assault, not even a pickpocket. Something for the Fiji Police Force to ponder upon? How and why the crime rate is very low. In my short visit I never locked the hotel rooms anytime. Even with the high cost of living, the crime rate is very low. Maybe the Fiji Police Force should send some officers to find out the reason and implement the same ideas in Fiji. Narayan Reddy Santo, Vanuatu

Dad and son

I enjoy having discussions with my son, his latest contribution was, “Dad, do you know, if you lose your left arm, your right arm is left”, io eh, vinaka my buddy. Nigel Fiu Owls Perch, Lautoka

Taxpayer funds

The following thought sprang to mind as I watched this week’s Parliament sitting: When you give someone a job and pay their salary, it’s not too much of an ask to know how much you’re paying them. Samuela Savu Farm Rd, Nakasi

Pension fund

I believe the decision by Government to allow people to withdraw their hard-earned savings from FNPF for cyclone rehabilitation, has contributed to the “no pension fund” after 60 per cent of workers retire at 55. Dan Urai Lautoka

News service

I often wonder why I bother to watch the news on our longest serving TV channel. Habit I suppose. We see the same interviews night after night. Then we have to listen to the reporter tell us what the person being interviewed will say and then they tell us the same thing over again. Why bother to have a reporter or waste time showing the person being interviewed. A waste of time Channel 1. Have a look at some other regional channels and listen to their news broadcasts and maybe learn how to present a news service. Margaret George Sigatoka

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