Letters to the Editor – June 24

Women in politics
I believe the greatest challenge is women themselves. They prefer to vote for men. DAN URAI Lautoka

Fish ban

I AGREE with Sukha Singh (FT 22/6) that we are on a donu ban right now. So much for sustainability, government regulates regardless of what we eat now. Not all are fishermen and eat donu on a subsistence basis. Most people go to the market for adequate nutrition but donu is regulated for sustainability. The ban will surely affect them. AMENATAVE YACONISAU Delainavesi

Blast from the past

Congrats to Socceroos (Australia) and the smallest Iceland . You are still very much alive and might appear in the last 16. Wow, jaw dropping success. Socceroos made the right decision by dumping and moving out of Oceania group in the early 90s or else they would still be playing Samoa, Vanuatu, New Zealand, Fiji etc. They have never looked back. The only beauty about Fiji Soccer was when we beat Socceroos twice. We always tend to look back at history as what we achieved because we can no longer create it now. We used to do that with 15s and 7s as well. But since the past four years rugby codes do not look back because they are going from strength to strength and creating and writing new history every time they play. The recent results prove very clearly. The good CEO and the president of the Fiji Football Association might argue —as they always do — that finance is the issue. I want to ask them when it was not, or if ever finance won’t be an issue. Finance was the issue then, when we beat the Socceroos twice. The real answer is soccer in this country has gone to dogs. The stiffness of the competition then and now is evident. You can fool some people sometimes but not all the time. The Fiji First have done so much good in our country. I just can’t understand why they are turning a blind eye on soccer by not investigating. Worst is that there is no live coverage on the paid Sky Pacific. So many people are waiting in frustration and I guess will continue to do so. Our small neighbouring countries will go past us very soon. We will still be at the mercy of “blast from the past” A. SHARIFF SHAH Savusavu

Shocking home loss

Firstly, our sincere congratulations must go to Ikale Tahi Tonga for the awesome victory over our Warriors. I am indeed painfully saddened to have witnessed our loss on home soil at Churchill Park, Lautoka. I will refrain from expressing our team’s weaknesses and subsequent loss. Coach McKee has a hard earned lesson not to express overconfidence as this clearly led to our complacency and downfall. A big wake-up call for Japan RWC. Ronnie CHANG Nadi.

Cadet training in schools

I wish to share a few experiences and thoughts about cadet training in schools so I’m just going to leave this here. About two months ago, my daughters returned home from school one afternoon and eagerly announced that cadet training was coming up. They were excited and looking forward to it. Three weeks ago, the training began. On the first few days, all three got home and went straight to bed without changing their uniforms, taking a shower, having dinner or studying/revising as is the norm in the evenings. In response to my enquiries the next morning, they replied that they were too tired to do anything else and just headed straight to bed. Last week they informed me I needed to buy cadet uniforms which were either given on hire for $25 a set (with $10 refund upon return in good condition) or $60 to own a set if you missed out on the chance to get a set for hire. From what I understand, training is carried out from 1-3pm on at least three days a week – that’s about six hours each week which is equivalent to a full day of school, excluding breaks. This week I asked how the training was going. This was the response I got: “Ma, they treat us like grown men in the army. They even swear at us.” I asked, what kind of swear words? They said, “They tell us f***, v******a, v******i. We even have to crawl in the drain.” They also shared with me how a classmate was rushed to hospital in the course of training because school authorities had ignored a parent’s instructions to exempt her child from participating in the training. A few thoughts came to mind: What kind of discipline is this and who are these people that have been entrusted to instil discipline in children?  To be swearing at children and in a school setting at that where hundreds of young minds are  exposed to vulgar language by a trainer, how is that supposed to help or discipline them? Do the trainers even understand the importance of their role? A child’s poor attitude or lack of discipline isn’t always a reflection or the result of their upbringing or the lack of discipline in the home. They may be taught well from home but their behaviour can also be influenced by other adults around them, including the instructors who in this case are accorded the respect shown towards teachers. The fact that children are undergoing strenuous training and being sworn at as if they’re recruits, and are too tired to revise the day’s classroom learnings at home or even have dinner should be a cause for concern. If six hours is dedicated to the training every week, why don’t we have an array of programs to choose from that would also help set our children up for the future? Is the cadetship the only program deserving of such importance in schools? While I realise there is some value in having such a program in schools, can the Ministry of Education also consider the development and introduction of other programs? SAMANTHA RINA, Koronivia

More Stories