Letters to the editor – January 23, 2023

Fiji 7s Manueli Maisamoa runs in attack against Australia during the Hamilton 7s. Picture: MARTIN SERAS LIMA

Fail to impress

THE Fiji men’s and women’s 7s teams bombed out of the Hamilton 7s Cup quarters after conceding defeat at the hands of the Los Pumas and USA. Spurred by the sea of blue, both sides failed to impress, making mistakes that cost us dearly. In the end, USA proved too strong for the Fijiana 7s, while the Los Pumas continued their winning run against Fiji in Hamilton.

In 2020, Fiji beat Australia and Samoa 19-12, respectively, but lost to the Los Pumas 10-26 in the final pool match, and got knocked out of the Cup quarters. Missed tackles, high penalty count and the inability to break the Pumas defence meant we trail them on the points table. After the loss to Argentina, the Aussies humbled the boys. Disappointing outing, but I thank the thousands of Fijians who gathered at FMG Stadium to support the boys. It was like watching Fiji playing at home. Gollings and the boys have a week to turn things around in Sydney!

RAJNESH LINGAM Balgovind Rd, Nadawa, Nasinu

Humiliating indeed

IN the 7th place play-off, what a comprehensive humiliation indeed – France 34 – 7 Fijiana.

The Fijiana 7s managed a consolation last gasp try in the final 30 seconds. Both, the men’s and women’s 7s coaches need deep soul-searching to seriously address this massive downward trajectory.

For us, the Hamilton 7s are a bad nightmare. Real unpleasant memories that will not go away easily.

RONNIE CHANG Martintar, Nadi

Better luck in Sydney

WE lost where it mattered the most. Better luck at the Sydney sevens.

DAN URAI Lautoka

Aiyaz’s concerns

ACCORDING to Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, the FijiFirst party has many concerns and in particular “some of the fundamental anamolies taking place under this coalition Government” ( ST 22/1 ).

As the democratic opposition it is only proper that it should raise what it regards are matters of concern in the public interest.

And where the concerns have merit a progressive government will take it onboard. I trust that will happen now. That is something the previous government

– Mr Sayed-Khaiyum’s ruling FijiFirst government – arrogantly ignored to do. It shouldn’t be too hard for Mr Sayed-Khaiyum and his FijiFirst colleagues to remember that.

RAJEND NAIDU Sydney, NSW, Australia

The Yash Ghai draft

CAN the general secretary of the FijiFirst party care to throw light on why the Yash Ghai draft constitution was undemocratic or unacceptable?

Records has it that they threw away the 1997 peoples constitution while they prepared and imposed their own. Was the 2013 Constitution passed by three-quarters of Parliament and three-quarters of the registered voters to be the legal supreme document of the land?

I still remember when the past government trashed the Yash Ghai draft constitution and forcefully and undemocratically told the nation to accept their constitution.

That’s their so-called democratic governance that they don’t like to talk about. Swallow your pride sir!


What’s his role

CAN someone tell us in what capacity did Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum call a press conference to condemn the coalition government?

What role is he really playing now?

He hasn’t submitted a single shred of evidence of the claims he made recently. Will those in power watch without doing anything after the allegations that surfaced when the FijiFirst lost power in the 2022 Election. It seems he is still in control.

JIOJI CAKACAKA Tadra, Votualevu, Nadi

On whose behalf

WHEN a dog keeps barking loudly outside our house at night we throw a few stones and that usually shuts it up.

By the way, when Mr Sayed-Khaiyum gave his long speech to the media the other night, on whose behalf was he speaking?

After he ousted himself from Parliament in favour of Alipate Nagata, he no longer represents anyone other than himself. Mr Sayed-Khaiyum’s big complaint would have had more credibility and important if it came from an elected representative like Mr Nagata.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum should confine his opinions in Letters to the Editor, just like the rest of us.

AREN NUNNINK Hooper St, Savusavu

Opulence and glamour

IT is freely and regularly talked about that the former PM still lives in opulence, glamour and splendour since December 24, 2022 after the Coalition Government claimed sweet victory – an official home handsomely renovated and upgraded to suit royalty.

A home which belongs to the State and the people of Fiji.

History tells us it was once the official residence occupied by former chief justices from the colonial era. Government records will confirm uncertainties. The million dollar question Fiji should be asking is will this home ever be returned to the judiciary.

It is only right, fitting, proper and just to do so in my view. Or have I erred on the side of caution? If so, I stand corrected. And I publicly apologise, unreservedly. Surely, slowly and steadily all truth will unfold, one way or another.

Fiji waits most patiently.

RONNIE CHANG Martintar, Nadi

Whoof whoof

GET ready to hear lots of barking and noise people. Who let the dogs out whoof whoof!


The law

ARE we all equal under the law?



NEW Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern would have never thrown in the towel if she had a “second” like Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.


Happy new year

A New Year in the Chinese Calendar has just started. Happy year of the Rabbit everyone. As the Chinese usually say may all have a prosperous year including Rajend Naidu from Sydney, Australia.


Chinese celebrate

Yesterday, the Chinese community celebrated the Chinese New Year.

Saying goodbye to the Tiger, the Chinese entered the Year of the Rabbit.

Wishing my Chinese brothers and sisters a happy New Year!


Bad roads

CAN Fiji Roads Authority fill the potholes on our roads urgently please.

So many cars are getting damaged badly with the bad conditions.


Public nuisance

WHILE a lot has been said about nightclub hours and the like where drunkards loiter, shout, fight and disturb others, especially in busy public places, I believe black markets are culprits as well.

Operating times should be reviewed and strictly adhered to by operators. Police need not to only carry out foot patrols, but act under cover also to ensure adherence. Otherwise this problem will persist.


Sugar price

I REMEMBER around this time last year when the Bainimarama government decided to increase the price of raw brown sugar.

Now since the coalition Government is in place under a new Minister of Sugar Charan Jeath and its new board chairperson, Mahendra Chaudhry, can they please reduce the price.

To all Fijians, there are other alternatives for brown sugar such as local fruits, dates, honey et cetera.

We have the power to boycott the buying of brown sugar because of its high cost followed by the high number of NCDs in Fiji.

JIOJI CAKACAKA Tadra, Votualevu, Nadi

Social activist

THE woman they call Amelia Rokotuivuna by Meli Laddpeter ( ST 22/1 ) captures the essence of what Amelia was as a pioneering social activist courageously committed to the struggle for human rights, women’s rights and democratic freedoms.

She was well ahead of her time. Fearless in her fight against injustice.

She was one of the group of 18 detained at the Totogo Police Station and truck fume gased for protesting the removal of the Bavadra government in the first military coup. Many well-known Fiji figures like Professor Wadan Narsey and Professor Vijay Naidu befriended Amelia and drew inspiration from Amelia’s example of commitment to the public good.

Amelia helped to launch Fiji into the modern rights and rule of law based democratic world. Amelia was never about self-aggrandisement . She was a true patriot dedicated to empowering the people .

RAJEND NAIDU Sydney, NSW, Australia

7s rugby standard

I BELIEVE other rugby 7s countries are improving their performances.

Why not Fiji?


Bitter pill to swallow

FIJI is not accustomed to losing. We are a rugby mad country. Losing is not in our blood.

Sadly, at the hands of Argentina, our men’s 7s rugby team has badly fallen short in the HSBC NZ 7s rugby.

It appears 7s head coach Ben Gollings is not of the same calibre as his northern hemisphere compatriates, Ben Ryan and Gareth Baber.

Something is definitely amiss.

Losing 10-19 to Argentina in the cup quarters is a bitter pill to swallow.

The 2022/2023 HSBC 7s series for our men is on a downward spiral.

The statistics are alarming. They do not lie. It ain’t good enough, Ben Gollings.

RONNIE CHANG Martintar, Nadi

More to rugby

RUGBY is just not about winning. Rugby helps build character in all players because it teaches you the meaning of good sportsmanship.

It also boosts self-esteem and self confidence.

It helps to improve social skills, tolerance, leadership, physical development, confidence, teamwork, discipline and how to deal with defeat. Most obviously do not know much or nothing about rugby.

They’re just an armchair critic.

WISE MUAVONO Hedstrom Pl, Balawa, Lautoka

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