Unite, PM urges

PRIME Minister Rear Admiral (Ret) Voreqe Bainimarama says he is personally convinced that greatness for the country lies just over the horizon.

And he has called for Fijians to remain united, patriotic and to love our nation and put its interests above our own, while at the same time, loving one another, especially those who are less fortunate.

And let us love and care for each other, and especially those among us who are less fortunate.

In his New Year’s Day address, Mr Bainimarama said 2014 was a magnificent year for Fiji and the country now turned its eyes toward 2015.

“As we move into 2015, we can all reflect on the achievements of the past year and our hopes for the future — both for ourselves and our families and our beloved nation,” he said.

“No Fijian can doubt the importance of 2014 — by any standards, a monumental year in our history.

“By embracing a common and equal citizenry and declaring every citizen a Fijian, the Fijian people rejected the voices of disunity among us and set us on a new path.

“In the process, we shattered many of the assumptions about politics in Fiji — that it would always be race-based and favour the elite.

“It was a genuine turning point in our nation’s fortunes and we are already reaping the benefits as the rest of the world recognises our remarkable achievement.”

He thanked the people of Fiji for trusting him to take the country forward, adding it was time to build on the positive steps made in 2014, specifically in education, infrastructure and the economy.

Mr Bainimarama said, however, that Fiji had much to do in order catch up on what he called “the lost years”.

“In 2014, we put those years behind us. And in the coming year, we are spending more than $3billion to move our nation forward, around a third of that improving our infrastructure.”

He gave his assurance to all Fijians that he would end, once and for all, the problem of water cuts, as well as introduce more roads and bridges and cultivate transport links with maritime communities that didn’t see a new ship for nearly 40 years.

“The coming year will be about putting the proper structures in place to carry us into the future.”

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