Letters to the Editor – September 15

The All Blacks performing the Haka. They will face Springboks at Cake Tin 7.30pm tonight. Picture: ALL BLACKS.COM

Wellington cracker
AFTER a string of “big” wins against the Wallabies and Pumas, the mighty All Blacks will aim for another resounding cracker against the Springboks at “The Cake Tin” tonight. Last year the All Blacks won the Bledisloe Cup and Rugby Championship. The All Blacks finished the Rugby Championship undefeated with 28 points. In a thriller at QBE Stadium in Albany last year, the All Blacks strangled the Springboks and handed the visitors their heaviest defeat 57-0. In the return match at Newlands in Cape Town the All Blacks edged the hosts 25-24. So far the world’s most successful rugby team has bagged maximum points and looks to add another five pointer to the points table. The return of Crusader Ryan Crotty, two-time world’s best rugby player Beauden Barrett, gas man and Blues Rieko Ioane and off-loading sensation SBW has strengthened the depth and versatility of the All Blacks. Last week in Nelson, an inexperienced All Blacks side walked away with a bonus point against a resurgent Pumas outfit. The likes of Tu’inukuafe, Frizell, Laumape, Harris, Perry, Tuungafasi and Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi stood their ground and impressed the All Blacks team management while the new combination of TJ Perenara and Richie Mo’unga clicked even under pressure. For the clash tonight, Steve Hansen has opted for the combination of Barrett and Aaron Smith and has brought back Squire while Anton Lienert-Brown makes the starting line-up. On the other hand, Lions star Malcolm Marx and fly-half Andre Pollard return to the Springboks squad. The All Blacks will be playing their last Test match in the capital city before touring Argentina and South Africa so hopes are high for a massive and blockbusting performance from them. Wishing the All Blacks all the best for tonight’s cracker! We win this and we seal the Rugby Championship title! Kaise baat, Anthony Sahai! RAJNESH ISHWAR LINGAM Nadawa, Nasinu

Child labour
WHEN I was growing up, there was no such thing as child labour, we had to do our chores around the house and the farm. We were proud to have a few plots of cassava, dalo, bele and other vegetables. There were many of us and we competed to see who planted the most and had the cleanest garden. We learnt a lot from this and I have passed this down to my children. I believe child labour for some is a lifestyle for us. We are proud to have been given the opportunity to do hard work. Oh, and just on the lighter side, I lived in Wailekutu and uncle Tom Lockington had a pair of 8oz boxing gloves which we used to practise boxing as a form of self defence and discipline. There were times when we met uncle Tom in the ring, we dared not get on his bad side any more. But that’s another story. ALLEN LOCKINGTON Kava Place, Waiyavi, Lautoka

Private practitioners

I AM deeply concerned about the fact that there are no private practitioners operating a 24-hour service in the North. Now this is a real concern because a lot of emergency cases happen at night and we cannot just rush to the Labasa Hospital that already has a lot of cases to attend to. I plead with health authorities to look into this and something must be done soon. A lot of patients go to private doctors because they do not want to wait for a long time before being served. NAVEEN DUTT Wainibokasi

Positive parenting
OUR children need more from the agencies responsible for their good upkeep. The policies of social welfare are indeed very relevant and commendable but it only comes into force in cases of child abuse and corporal punishment whether in schools, communities or in families. I also know that there is a helpline that can be used to report any such cases. A colleague of mine some time ago called on this helpline and reported a case where a couple of children were being beaten, verbally abused and threatened day in day out. Two to three people attended to that call from the other side but it ended up nowhere. Incidents such as this is impeding the empowerment status of the community. In fact, this is a clear display of disrespect and mistrust towards the person who has made a genuine call while giving his or her mobile number for further reference later on. In my opinion, instead of being reactive, this section of the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation should be proactive. All new parents should go through these policies and training before the child is released from the hospital upon delivery. They should get a clearance from this unit that they have understood the positive parenting initiative and the binding legal framework. More community work should be carried out physically by this section of the said ministry instead of working through other means while at the office. Calling the local office is also a huge problem. Your phone would not be received from the other side. Where have the welfare officers (or whatever they are called) gone? There are lots of other strategies that can be used to get this child abuse situation under control if there is a will to work them out through genuine consultation and community partnerships. I have plenty to offer if one wants assistance all in my genuine desire to assist the vulnerable children from any form of abuse at such a tender age. I am thinking of their future and their potential to become hard-lined citizens later on if not taken care of now. God bless our young ones and may He widen the horizon of logical thinking of our relevant service providers to encompass better strategies to combat child abuse in any form. DHIRENDRA PRASAD Lautoka

Precious resource

THE dry spell hanging over the Western Division is a timely reminder about how special water is and how difficult life can become without adequate supplies. Whatever one’s view and wherever one is located across the country, let’s take time to appreciate the value of water in our lives and remember that some have to live their daily lives with less water. After all, it is a precious resource. FLOYD ROBINSON Nasinu

Sevens series

NATIONAL 7s coach Gareth Baber’s task becomes difficult as the 2018-19 HSBC World Rugby Sevens Series starts in the next two months. The Welshman’s first assignment will be defending the Oceania 7s title that our boys won last year after defeating the All Blacks 26-0. With the departure of the “Sledgehammer” Sau, Baber needs to find his replacement — a 7s sensation with electrifying pace and “in your face” defensive tactics. With Veitokani’s sublime form in the NRC, I would pencil the former Stallion and Rewa flyer and current Namosi kingpin into the training squad alongside his attacking partner Frank Lomani and Suva speedstar Levani Kurumudu, Namosi’s Cyril Reece and Nadroga full-back Apisalome Waqatabu. These players have been playing consistently for the Fiji Airways Drua side and I reckon they have the mental and physical fitness to make it into the 7s team. Fiji won five out of the 10 tournaments in 2017-18 WRSS but missed out on the Commonwealth 7s gold medal, Melrose Cup and top place in the WRSS, and Baber must iron out the weaknesses from last season as the 7s international calendar hits stage. Apart from these stars, our U20 players and those who stamped a mark at the Deans competition deserve a call in the 7s training squad. All the best Baber! RAJNESH ISHWAR LINGAM Nadawa, Nasinu

Good luck Drua

OUR local boys playing for the Drua will be up against the mighty Queensland Country team and it will be a game pitting the amateurs against the professionals and all we can take into the game is the pride of the jersey and our love for the game. Our coach for the U20 said there was a gap between our secondary school players and the upper level and I urge those in the white house to seriously look into this if we are serious about retaining the core of our players locally. Let’s put rugby first and build-up our local competition so that there will come a day when we can do away with excuses about amateurish players against professional players and just be rugby players bred and born locally. Anyway, I’ll leave that for the bigwigs to sort because we can only give our five cents worth. Good luck boys — go hard, play as a unit and enjoy your rugby. Toso Drua!! Lawrence Wara, Suva

Sex assault
MOST sex assault victims at work are ashamed to report because they believe nothing will happen. I believe mechanisms should be put in place to protect victims or is the current law sufficient? DAN URAI Lautoka

Elections fight

ELECTIONS should be fought and won based on principles, positions and ideologies. Not grandstanding and promise-making. WISE MUAVONO Balawa, Lautoka

Beer price

WELL! Hard drugs are cheaper than beer. How do you know Mr Urai? MANOJ LAL PATEL Drasa Ave, Lautoka

New syllabus

THERE are numerous problems reflected in our newspapers in this era of modern living. Pollution, poor waste management, attitude and behaviour, road usage, language, time management, resource management and many more I believe should be formalised into a new syllabus to be taught compulsorily in our schools right up to degree levels. Perhaps it may bring out some change. DHIRENDRA PRASAD Lautoka

Dump visit
GOOD to see Dr Reddy at the Vunato dump (FT 14/09). That’s the way to do it, come down and actually see what is happening. Sir, as usual Kava Place welcomes you to have a bowl of grog, perhaps next time. We will be honoured to host you. ALLEN LOCKINGTON Kava Place, Waiyavi, Lautoka

Local soccer

IN regards to Mr Lingam’s letter (FT 14/09), I suggest he spend time with his family and watch a comedy or a thriller for that matter rather than watching the maro bhago soccer at the IDC tournament. I once asked my 14-year-old son if he would like to accompany me to a local soccer tournament, he just shook his head no and told me that he would rather watch Messi and Suarez on TV than waste his day watching local soccer. SACHIN SINGH Suva

Critical status

THE revelation by the Water Authority of Fiji that about 40 per cent (18/45) water sources in the country are at critical status (FT 14/09) is a cause for worry especially for the northern region. Water shortage is a harsh reality of our daily lives as the editor of The Fiji Times, Fred Wesley, says and let’s comply with mitigation plans. AMENATAVE YACONISAU Palm Drive, Delainavesi

New immigrants

HOW many new immigrants have come to Fiji in the past four years? Sukha Singh, Labasa

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