Letters to the Editor – October 16

Elina Matalomani enters data on a tablet after disussions with FHH Savusavu depot foreman Filimone Baleinaivirewa. Picture: SUPPLIED

Hard work pays off
The article titled “Hard work pays off” by Ana (F/T 15/10) could not have come at a better time as our children prepare for their exams. It was pleasing to read that Elina, who hails from Cakaudrove, found her way in a man’s world as she is the only female road inspector working for Fulton Hogan Highways at the Savusavu depot. The Hidden Paradise has nurtured many who have contributed immensely to Fiji’s development and I am glad that Elina has continued with this legacy. Elina pointed out that gender was not as important as hard work and this brought my attention to the article by Siteri titled “Empowering women” where she stressed that greater participation of women was needed in national development. Both articles empower readers as they teach us to respect women and the skills and knowledge that women possess and which are integral for success at any workplace. Thank you Siteri and Ana for sharing the inspirational stories especially after reading the front page about the rise in fuel prices! Finally, to Elina, all the best in your future endeavours and continue to make a name for yourself kai! Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam Nadawa, Nasinu

Election campaign

It appears to me that instead of talking and preaching about his own party’s policies and achievements, I believe our Prime Minister’s major focus is on the National Federation Party. I also believe that he has lost a lot of support in the iTaukei community therefore he is now clutching on support of Fijians of Indian descent. Whatever may be the reason the PM should not say that a vote for NFP means a vote for SODELPA. These are two different political parties and each has its own policies. As far as I am concerned I can’t see that NFP is looking after Fijians of Indian descent only. It has a good mix of candidates in this election and this could be a major cause of worry for our PM. My sincere request to our national leader that is our Prime Minister is to fight this election on issues and policies. Please do not bring race or religion in your campaign. Please do not confuse our ordinary and humble people in the villages and settlements. Finally my polite request to all political parties is to keep this election clean and I wish them good luck. VIJAY MAHARAJ Navua

Cyber bully
On Sunday morning I received mail which I wish to bring to the attention of your readers. It came from a cyber bully. The sender of this e mail is blackmailing me to pay him $500 if I don’t want the “intimate site content”, the bully alleges that I frequent to all. The bully has given me four days in which to do this and also a bit-coin address to send the money to. This is cyber blackmail. On Sunday our pastor preached about the bully Goliath in church. Well I know what to do with the bully “cut his head off”. I have sent this letter and enclosed the email so that you can alert the public about this form of blackmail. Maybe other people are also receiving such e mails. I am glad that USP has a master’s program in cyber security and that Pacific TAFE down in Statham Campus will be starting a certificate program in cyber security next year, 2019. Korina Waibuta Knollys St, Suva

Disqualified candidates

I feel sorry for the six provisional candidates who have been disqualified by the Fijian Elections Office from standing in the upcoming 2018 General Election (FT 14/10). We all know the rule that you have to be in Fiji for two years or 24 months when the writ of election is issued and also those convicted of criminal offences cannot be a candidate. Political Parties should have checked and cleared their provisional candidates beforehand instead of the last minute of filing nominations to replace those disqualified. I am especially sorry for National Federation Party provisional candidate Feroz Gulam Mohammed who has been campaigning on FB for some months now. He has been stirring the pot and got some nasty remarks but as a true would be candidate, he has developed a thick skin and hard jaws. To all the disqualified candidates, try again next time and remember, we do not have to be in Parliament to help or to add value to the lives of fellow Fijians. Savenaca Vakaliwaliwa Suva

Our votes
Now since the writ for election has been confirmed, political parties are out and about campaigning, where this time around we the ordinary voters feel very important because now our future leaders are coming down to our level, begging for our one vote. However, while following the different media outlets regarding the campaigns, I must admit that some of the things said by candidates and party leaders are very disturbing especially when they start playing their cards on race and religions and blaming others for being racists. What are they trying to prove out of the debates like such, that they are not racists? A famous actor once said that if you want to stop racism, stop talking about it, because the moment you start talking about it, you yourself have become a racist. So for me a better alternative would be a party has value of respect and upholding the truth,
that what they promised through their manifestos would be delivered if they come to power. KOSITATINO TIKOMAIBOLATAGANE, Vuninokonoko Rd, Navua

Suicide cases

AFTER reading about the rise in lives lost through suicide, I decided to write about some measures taken to save the vulnerable lives. According to The Fiji Times dated October 6, 2018, a teenager’s death was classified as suicide by the police. I believe one major reason for high suicide rate
in Fiji is teenagers are unable to deal with personal stress and issues faced in their personal lives. This includes difficulties like bullying at school, online victimisation and abuse and early pregnancy. There should be classes held in schools and many help centres to be established for those students who need help and advice. More awareness programs to be held in order to educate the younger generations about the importance and how
valuable lives are. I feel the school curriculum should include special classes in which the students feel free to discuss problems which they face
with the teachers and the rest of the students. This will be very helpful in changing the mind-set for students and help them rethink before committing suicide. The parents should always take out time to communicate with children and make them feel secure. Suicide can be prevented
if more awareness and opportunities are provided to young students to voice their concerns since such acts have a great influence on both the parents and the victims. SHORAN LATA, Vitogo Parade, Lautoka

Game performance

I shouted out with a big “Yes” and thank you God when I opened my laptop on Saturday evening to check the NRC results and it showed Drua 33-Force 28! The three-minute highlight on YouTube revealed that our boys displayed open running rugby but they still need to work on the basics such as making tackles count, ball handling and minimising error. The semi-final on Saturday with Canberra Vikings will not be an easy affair, even though our boys had earlier defeated them 40-35 at home. The Vikings will not allow themselves to be defeated twice by the Fiji Airways Drua in Fiji in a matter of weeks and they will come out firing. It has been a joy watching the open running rugby and the skill-set that goes with it displayed by the Drua in this 2018 National Rugby Championship and despite everything that Canberra Vikings will throw at them on Saturday at Churchill Park, we have faith and believe that our boys will not disappoint the Fiji rugby fans. Go Drua, go! Savenaca Vakaliwaliwa Suva

Drua vs Flying Fijians
Whatever transpires in the semi-final against the Vikings, I would like to see the Fijian Drua taking on the Flying Fijians in a full competitive series, one match at Churchill Park and another at ANZ Stadium. The idea would be to find the best player in each position and ensure that team that leaves for the November tour is indeed the best and not made up of “names” who will always protect their bodies for the sake of their “bread-and-butter”, rightly so to some extent. For too long some of our warriors (formerly Fiji Warriors team), now the Drua, have been overlooked and the big names become a shoo-in almost annually. I would rather run them against each other and choose the better performers. I see that Veitokani, Lomani and Vota are being eyed by McKee, but only three? The writing seems to be on the wall, yet again. A fellow writer and old friend, Amenatave Yaconisau, often lamented the lack of opportunity for the players from our local provincial competition in the national frame, and now, with the way the Drua are playing, making near-impossible comebacks, I join the likes of Amena who have rallied to get these men a chance. I don’t think it is even remotely possible, but assuming we dispatch the Vikings this Saturday, and then regardless of whatever happens in the final versus Queensland Country (most likely), the Drua players must be given a fair chance to prove themselves, and prove themselves against the very players they wish to replace. Otherwise, we have too many injury-prone “stars” based around Europe, making the cut, rather shooed-in for national duties. Then we have them stretchered off prematurely or they just don’t turn up with their game boots. What Gareth Southgate is doing with the England national soccer team is great, but we could do greater. Cobwebs never did anyone any good. Spiders do benefit though. Donald Singh Lautoka

Home semi

It’s confirmed that Churchill Park will for the first time host the NRC semi-final. Our Drua’s pulsating win away from home against the Force brought joy to thousands of fans and it’s now or never for the Drua. Hence, I urge fans to pack Churchill Park and provide the extra ounce of strength that our boys will need to book a home final! The Drua has brought home the Horan-Little Shield and our boys are beaming with confidence as they play the fourth ranked Canberra Vikings who narrowly beat Brisbane City 13-10. In round 6 the Drua beat the Vikings by 40-35 despite the comfortable 33-7 cushion at half-time and the ability of the Vikings to score four tries in the second half shows that the visitors will be no pushover. Last year the Vikings topped the standings with 29 points and in the semi-final beat Perth Spirit 40-35 at home. However, they lost the final against Queensland Country 42-28. As I conclude, I wish our boys all the best and I hope that we will see a polished and changed outfit in the sugar city. Wananavu Drua! RAJNESH ISHWAR LINGAM, Nadawa, Nasinu

Dream voting
I have had instances where I have dreamt about things before they happen. And they actually do happen in reality. Now, I am particularly looking forward to the night I am going to dream about the results of the coming election. And when that happens, I will quietly celebrate and await the reality that will happen. Oh, yes, I trust my dreams so much that I will base my vote on these dreams. Happy voting everyone! Joeli Naleca Natabua, Lautoka

WiFi launch
I hope Government looks at other alternatives to launch their Walesi WiFi initiative. It is sad to see blue and white balloons released at the launching of the government’s Walesi free WiFi event. Plant trees and mangroves and you will also save our environment and marine animals. AnnMary Vikatoria Raduva Year 904 Adi Cakobau School

Human rights
Now that Fiji has been elected to the UN Human Rights Council we can count on Fiji to defend the human rights of the West Papuan people as they continue their struggle for self-determination and against colonial oppression. Can’t we? Rajend Naidu Sydney, Australia

Tank for sale
I have now made up my mind to sell the top half of my vehicle’s fuel tank as it has not been used over the past few years. With the latest increase in fuel price, the top half of the tank is anticipated to get rusted in the coming years, therefore, I have decided to make a smart move. Anyone who is interested can contact me via this column, please. Ashis Kumar Ba

Facebook drama
Facebook is like politics. Many ideas, much talk, lotsa backstabbing, and front stabbing also. Dirty laundry is hung out in public. Heaps of mudslinging. Much drama. No swearing, but lotsa swearing at. Fake profiles. But fun. Allen Lockington Kava Place, Waiyavi, Lautoka

Rich-poor gap
Independent statistics indicate that poverty level in Fiji is increasing as the gap between the rich and the poor widens. There is nothing confusing about these facts. A worker earning $100 per week, an unemployed individual and a retired worker pay the same VAT on basic food items as a worker earning $1000 per week. Don’t need a church leader to show that! Dan Urai Lautoka

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