Letters to the Editor – September 12

Fiji Under 20 players celebrate winning the World Rugby U20 Trophy in Bucharest, Romania. Photo: FRR / World Rugby.

Rugby progress 
YOUR front page picture of our under-20 warriors’ trophy win against Samoa (FT 11/09) and the Drua’s scintillating two wins show rugby is growing at grassroots level as we head towards the next Rugby World Cup. Koli Sewabu and Senirusi Seruvakula — both former fiery number eights for Fiji — are showing what it takes to play the best.
They both have been there and have done it and their coaching is paying off.
They are the unsung heroes and we must show full support to them in their plans ahead. The stakeholders must continue to nurture them and look after these two former warriors.
To your editorial comment on drugs, this is now like a chronic disease that must stop to spread.
No to drugs and thugs. Go Fiji, for ever.

In top flight
HATS off to our national U20 team for walloping Samoa 58-8 to win back the tier one spot after being relegated in 2014! It took four years but former Flying Fijians Koli Sewabu, Sireli Bobo and Kele Leawere and our junior Flying Fijians did the job in style, outmuscling the Samoans in most phases and scoring nine beautiful tries to maintain their unbeaten run.
Before this win, Samoa had clipped our wings in the two previous meetings and looked favourites after topping its pool, but our boys’ never-say-die attitude laid the platform for the comprehensive win.
It’s a proud moment for the entire team and I salute the boys and management for delivering the goods.
It was a joy to see our ruggers display sterling and running rugby with some flamboyant and clinical offloads and breakthroughs while our defence was gutsy and ferocious.
Indeed the years of investment and development of rugby at grassroots level is bearing fruits.
Now that our team has been promoted, I hope that FRU will work hand in hand to choose the best players and ensure that we give the tier one teams a taste of the Fijian culture and magic. Vinaka vakalevu boys for the win and promotion!
Nadawa, Nasinu

Child exploitation
IT’S sad to see children under the age of 18 becoming breadwinners in their families. As parents, we must ensure that our children do have a better future, to be in school and not working to provide for families.
As vulnerable as they are, we never know what’s going on at work, whether they are treated well and what sort of work is given to them as this can affect them emotionally, socially and physically.
Therefore it is our responsibility as parents to see that they are taken care of and loved and not exploited.

Cane burning
THIS is a follow-up to my letter printed on the above subject.
Yesterday, I spent about 90 minutes at the Ba sugar mill truck park. Every truck carrying manually-harvested cane had a burnt load, every single one! Those trucks carrying mechanically-harvested cane had about 35 per cent burnt cane on board. I suppose there is a lesson here.
Apart from the environmental damage (air pollution and soil degradation) in cane burning, I believe there is a high cost involved to process burnt cane. There is always the risk that sugar shipments will get a lower price from the buyers if our sugar is of poor quality and they have to reprocess it.
I believe farmers practising burning must be heavily penalised.
It can start this year and penalties levied should be as follows: 1. Environmental levy/tonne of cane burnt. 2. Processing cost penalty levy/tonne of cane burnt. Levy 2 can easily be worked out by FSC, levy 1 needs an input from environmental agencies. It should not be peanuts.
If the farmers repeat the exercise next season, then the above levy penalties should be doubled.
Additionally, the various subsidies these farmers receive should be reduced by 20 per cent. I believe there is only one way to fix these people, hit them in the pockets. I object strongly to my tax dollars subsidising such people and I am sure others would agree.

Election issues
READING through your weekly feature of other political parties’ views (other than FijiFirst) on the true state of the nation’s economy, infrastructure, poverty, human rights, unemployment, education system, social welfare scheme, high cost of living to name a few, is really interesting and informative to the ordinary person. For the betterment of our ethnic Fijians, especially the rural readers, I suggest your editorial team translate those articles in vernacular and print in the Nai Lalakai and let them decide the party to vote for in the coming elections.

Roadworks concern
SITTING beside an elderly man in a bus on my way to Navua, an interesting conversation was sparked between us regarding the many roadworks that were happening around the Suva-Navua corridor.
After the exchange of names and places where we come from, he asked me how long I had been living in Navua, to which I responded, “about four years”.
He then again asked whether I had noticed something about these roadworks, to which I responded, “like what”? The elderly man then shared something interesting which I believe is worth sharing.
He said if you closely monitored the roadworks in the past three years, you would have noticed that the works seemed to be revolving around the same area all the time.
The reason is that they (contractors), will be concentrating their work in areas where they have easy access to their raw materials and proper base for their machines so they would save more money from their fuel and transportation costs.
He further said that even if the road was better in this area compared with others, they would find some fault somewhere so they could continue working in the same area.
In his words he further added, “what a waste of taxpayers money.”
Vuninokonoko Rd, Navua

Trees in Suva
I WOULD just love someone of authority at Suva City Council to explain how three mature trees in front of the Fiji Development Bank building have been chopped down in their prime?
What happened to COP23?
Tamavua, Suva

Seek help
SUICIDE is an unnatural way to die.
For the loved ones left behind, there is more guilt, more “what if” and more “I should have”. It leaves feelings of rejection and abandonment along with the sorrow and pain. To all those people who have ever lost a loved one to suicide, my deepest, deepest sympathy to you.
Students thinking of committing suicide, please seek help. You deserve every joy the world has to offer. I’m sorry for what life has thrown at you, but it will get better.
You should be around to enjoy it.
Balawa, Lautoka

No change
WHY are retail supermarkets still selling goods priced at values ending frequently in 99 cents when they cannot give the one cent or two cent change?
The smallest coin denomination we have now is five cents, so goods should never be priced for change below that! As a matter of fact, I believe it should be deemed illegal!
Rava Estate, Savusavu

Water issues
HOW much will it cost us to run water pipes to the Yasawa and Mamanuca group of islands? And how much has it cost us carting water to them during droughts?
Kava Place, Waiyavi, Lautoka

Hard drugs
THE menace of hard drugs such as methamphetamine is worrying because it has infiltrated our zones and has the potential to damage our society.
We need everyone’s assistance as The Fiji Times editor says “active participation of all stakeholders to support the police”. I totally agree.
Palm Drive, Delainavesi

Drug problem
I BELIEVE our police department made extra efforts in raiding small marijuana farms and small-time drug peddlers and they forgot to concentrate on all the different kinds of hard drugs that are available on our streets. Maybe the Fiji Police Force should form another unit just to combat hard drugs issue. What say uncle Allen.

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