Letters to the Editor – Monday, October 26, 2021

Newly elected President Ratu Wiliame Katonivere. Picture: FILE/ JONACANI LALAKOBAU

New President

CONGRATULATIONS to the Tui Macuata (Matanitu Vanua of the Tovata Confederacy) for been selected to be our next President.

My only concern is for Government not to use him for its propaganda and rubber stamp.

Tui Macuata is a fair and wise decision person.

Happy retirement Mr and Mrs Konrote.

JIOJI MASIVESI, Tadra- Votualevu, Nadi

The man for the job!

The Friendly North beamed with excitement as Tui Macuata Ratu Wiliame Katonivere was announced the new President of Fiji.

His appointment is history in the making as it is the first time that a high chief from Macuata has been appointed as President.

Chiefs from the North had their say, and reading their comments, one concludes they are in favour of Ratu Wiliame Katonivere’s appointment.

The journey for our new President will not be smooth sailing as he will have a lot on his plate.

The 2022 General Election mounts and the nation is on a recovery mode from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

I wish Ratu Wiliame Katonivere all the best and I’m sure he will make every Fijian from the Friendly North proud!


High praises

THE new President has been highly praised.

Would the new President reveal if his approach to fulfilling his public duties be any different from all those who have previously held the same office?


Election promise

RECENTLY, The Peoples’s Alliance party leader Mr Rabuka made an election promise that if elected, his Government will resume paying millions of dollars of USP grants.

However, he has so far failed to provide an explanation of how he will raise the revenue to meet this financial commitment, how the expenditure is to be made and to which budget sector agency it is to be allocated.

Can we soon expect some unwelcome visitors in the middle of the night to Mr Rabuka’s home?

BHARAT MORRIS, Rifle Range, Suva

Teacher transformations

I WRITE to commend and congratulate the Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts, honourable Premila Kumar for the proactive vision she has projected for teacher transformation in Fiji’s schools.

She was speaking at the leadership training workshop organised by the College of Humanities and Education at Pacific Harbour.

The minister did not mince her words in expressing her dissatisfaction with the quality of teachers coming out of our teacher training institutions.

The number of discipline cases and moral related issues coming to the Ministry of Education is of great concern, she reiterated.

Lack of communication skills (written and oral) leaves much to be desired.

Further, she stressed that after basic professional teaching skills many teachers fail to upskill and keep pace with the latest technical developments.

Such lethargic teachers cannot provide the much needed guidance to our children.

She said that teachers should be able to write books and prepare e-resources and create private tuition centres.

Furthermore, she categorically stated that a teacher training degree will not guarantee teachers a job.

They will have to sit a test and go for an interview to be conducted by the Ministry of Education.

Fiji Teachers Registration Board will be asked to ensure that teachers continuously undergo professional training.

She also talked about the revision of curriculum at all levels to include dynamic, inquiry based education.

ICT (information and communications technology) to play a greater role.

Civic and moral education to be included in the curriculum for balanced personality development.

However, the minister did not touch upon the poor salaries the teachers are being paid because of their large numbers.

The optimum class sizes was not mentioned.

Very large classes cause stress to teachers and can lead to nervous breakdown.

Role of school committees and parents also needs to be discussed.

My best wishes to the ministry and teachers of the future with these high expectations.

DEWAN CHAND, Donu Place, Namadi Heights, Suva

Illiberal democracy

I NOTED this word in your FT 18/09.

I looked up for its meaning on Google and this what it says: “An illiberal democracy is a governing system in which, although elections take place, citizens are cut off from knowledge about the activities of those who exercise real power because of the lack of civil liberties; thus it is not an open society.

“There are many countries ‘that are categorised as neither ‘free’ nor ‘not free’, but as ‘probably free’, falling somewhere between democratic and nondemocratic regimes”. — Source from Wikipedia.

According to reports on Democracy Index compiled by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), the research division of the Economist Group, a UK-based private company which publishes the weekly newspaper The Economist, Fiji is ranked 83rd globally but under Flawed Democracy in a 2020 Ranking.

We have so much knowledge to learn every day and no human knows it all.

JIOJI MASIVESI, Tadra- Votualevu, Nadi

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