Letters to the Editor – Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Fiji’s Sireli Maqala is pursued by Britain’s Ethan Waddleton in their men’s rugby 7s match at the 2020 Summer Olympics. Picture: AP Shuji Kajiyama

Scintilating performance

We bounced back in emphatic style and proved our critics wrong.

With mediocre performance in the first two pool matches there were already some negativities perpetuated on social media.

But less did they realise the fact, that it is 7s rugby and we can always regroup and come out firing in the next match.

I believe Baber has a plan to use a more measured approach to progress and not to just put everything in one game.

It is tournament rugby and getting the gold medal is the ultimate goal, therefore, we need a plan to execute this.

This reminds me of how England progressed in Euro 2020 with average performance in pool play and then advancing into the final.

Let’s hope this is going to work.

Toso Viti, toso!

Pranil Ram, Votualevu, Nadi

Unbeaten Fiji marches on

Our last pool match against Great Britain brought back beautiful memories of the 2016 bashing that we handed them in the grand finale.

Great Britain, made up from top 7s players from England, Scotland and Wales, was laced with experience and had four survivors (Ollie Lindsay-Hague, Dan Bibby, Tom Mitchell and Dan Norton) from the 2016 loss while we only had Jerry Tuwai from our 2016 Rio champion team.

Fiji put up a much better, an improved and a polished effort against GB which had yet to concede a try or a point against them.

Fiji defeated Japan by a less than comfortable margin, and we were stretched by Canada, but our boys started on a fiery note.

Our boys delivered something exceptional.

Our defence was on par.

We hit them hard and GB crumbled and made errors, even to the extent of giving rugged Asaeli Tuivuaka a gift of a try.

In their two previous matches against Canada and Japan, GB, which had fast and athletic players, was efficient and organised, but Fiji had too much firepower which drowned their fighting spirit.

The performance against GB brought back smiles and hopes, as our boys prepared for the quarter-final against the best third, and a likely semis clash against South Africa.

The boys carry our hopes, dreams and aspirations of a back-to-back Olympics gold medal.

Wananavu boys!

Toso Viti!

Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam, Nadawa, Nasinu

Freedom of speech

I periodically wonder whether equality, objectivity and freedom to express, some of the hallmarks of an autonomous nation, is still active in post-2006 Fiji.

With Opposition members of Parliament being rounded up left right and centre for expressing their interpretations of Bill 17 (FT 27/07), I feel that our country has evolved into an authoritarian and an oppressive one, suppressing the fundamental privileges of its citizens in the process.

On the subject of freedom of speech, I was once firmly instructed by a former employer “not” to write letters in The Fiji Times as I was now “part of their family”.

I am still trying to ascertain on whatever that expression in quotes meant.

On that day, my sovereign right of putting pen to paper was threatened, yet I continue to write.

I believe our democracy is heavily cloaked.

Nishant Singh, Lautoka

World in trouble

Going through the news media, it is very much evident that the world is in trouble.

COVID is not calming down.

The increase in number of cases and deaths is alarming.

It has exposed our vulnerability and it is creating havoc in many lives.

The unexpected burglary and other crimes are taking its toll.

The political dilemma is not sparing anyone and it continues with commotion and rifts.

NCDs is a major killer as people are not able to fulfil all components of health and wellbeing.

No work, no food, mental health disturbances causing huge impact in daily lives.

Wildfire damaging the natural ecosystem in some parts of the world is not easing.

Heavy rain and floods damaging infrastructure and buildings is record-breaking.

Some are concerned that global warming and climate change has its impacts as we experience monsoon rain and floods.

Plants, animals and human lives are lost.

Just a thought, will we be able arrest this catastrophe or we are adding more fuel to fire with our actions?

Rouhit Karan Singh, Lautoka

Healthcare workers

Lord God, bringer of wholeness, giver of peace, strengthen your servants who are putting themselves on the line, pouring themselves out, looking to the interests of others in order to heal the sick and tend to the suffering.

Help them to know they are seen and valued, not only by you, but by all of us who are grateful for their sacrifices and awed by their tenacity, commitment, skill and care.

Loving God, we place into your care all our healthcare workers.

Give them courage of heart, and strength of mind and body.

Keep them safe from harm.

God of all consolation, may they know your protection and peace.

Grant them rest, give them fortitude, guide our collective will, shape all our actions, unite us in upholding one another in this extraordinary time and always.

Bless all our healthcare workers in these challenging days and bless their families.


PS: Vinaka na veiqaravi Sister Mereoni of the Lautoka Hospital. (Tau wakakau).

Wise Muavono, Balawa, Lautoka

Letters to the editor

I love reading many of the letters to the editors every day but one in particular reads like an old tape recorder replaying what has been already published just a couple of weeks and days back.


They really have all the photographic memory to remember all the details and then put pen to paper.

Wow, they have all the time in the world.

Simione Qiolevu, Vunikoka, Savusavu

What am I?

My wife had gotten ill.

Her late test on the ninth day for COVID-19 was received as positive on her 15th day of illness.

I had cared for her throughout without a mask and only isolated from her after the ninth day.

There are only the two of us at home.

We were tested together and my swab results came on the 16th day as negative and free to move around.

We both have registered but because of her illness had to wait before getting vaccinated.

Currently, my wife is getting better and in quarantine awaiting her next swab.

I was not on medication.

I am neither symptomatic nor asymptomatic so what am I Dr Fong?

Fereti Motufaga, Suva

Qorvis payment

In retrospect and sincerity I wish to ask the current Government what on Earth are they paying so much from the taxpayers’ coffers for Qorvis to be doing all your public relations work?

Are your honourable Cabinet ministers not good enough to be writing their speeches?

Areki Dawai, Suva

‘COVID’ games

With zero fans and empty stadiums, I believe the 2021 Tokyo Olympics should be re-branded as the “COVID” games.

And with travel restrictions in place, how did the maskless Raj and Tukana manage to sneak into Japan? (FT cartoon 27/07).

Nishant Singh, Lautoka

Land Bill

When the HOPE party leader who is linked to a chiefly family can clearly understand the lands Bill in the 2013 Constitution, then why can’t SODELPA members Tabuya and Gavoka and Rabuka understand it.

Jaheed Buksh, Korolevu, Sigatoka

Time to rest

Are frontline workers given sufficient or reasonable days off to rest?

Dan Urai, Lautoka

Second jab

Just recently it was noticed that all those who went earlier than the date given for the second jab were told to come back on the actual date given on the vaccination card.

It was not the case before.

I believe many people came across this in the recent drive-through process in Lautoka.

Why is it not acceptable now compared with before where we were told as soon our eight weeks’ timeline finishes, we should go for the second jab?

Can someone from the health officials please respond on this as many people have vented their frustrations and requested to ask for feedback.

Many people went for their second jabs from work and some went from far but were returned although their eight weeks were completed.

Please can this be clarified.

Kirti Patel, Lautoka

National issues

The things that are happening on this island nation at the moment seems not good to me.

National issues on shaky grounds are like a sinkhole ready to open up.

Nanise Soko, Suva

Speed in team

The big question that raffles the feathers is where is the speed in the team.

Is Tuwai at his best on attack?

His defence is solid with two turnovers that prevented the Canadians from a possible upset.

Nonetheless what is concerning is the positional changes confusing the attack and defence making it tough to perform.

Tuimaba getting flat footed with Canadian wing outpacing him.

We need a bounce back in our A team playing together for some time to create the mana magic.

Radradra in the forwards limiting him with movements is another big concerning point and of course the trailer is missing the bus.

Why not considered?

Coming back to Jerry he looks solid on defence but where is the attacking prowess that made him the world player of the year?

Let’s see the combo pack in the finale.

All the best cheers.

Shalwyn Prasad, Mukta Ben Place, Nabua, Suva

Aussie cartoon

That guy must be an Aussie cartoon to speak of his readiness in looking forward to watch some cartoon of his preference here in Fiji.

Maybe the cartoons in his adopted nation are not good enough to entertain him nor his contribution are good enough to be noticed by the cartoons of his adopted nation.

Lucky Dube wrote and sang: And if you can’t say something good about somebody, oh shut up.

Must be a hell lot of popcorn and masala chai to prepare.

Areki Dawai, Suva

Climate change

Normally with all sorts of other issues confronting our country, I would not bother to respond but I believe Edward Blakelock’s ignorance on climate change cannot be left unchallenged.

It will be unfair on our students, experts and leaders who have been championing this issue recognised as the number one priority for all Pacifc SIDS.

It is also insulting to the leaders, people and host of agencies working to assist the vulnerable small island countries to deal with the serious impacts of climate change which are having a catastrophic effect on development.

Maybe science and technology has not quite reached the far flung parts of Pacific Harbour, but I believe what the writer is trying to propagate is a myth and propaganda that has been debunked 20 years ago.

The climate change science is no longer in question and the world has moved on.

Even the diehard sceptics are now scrambling to find new arguments in defence of their earlier claims.

Even the large businesses in all parts of the world have the vision to see how the world is moving to a zero carbon economy and taking steps to ensure their future investments are not compromised.

That is being pragmatic and not burying one’s head in the sand in the face of irrevocable evidence the rising emissions of greenhouse gases is responsible for the warming planet which is already causing large scale often irreversible impacts through extreme weather events, impacting biodiversity,oceans and life.

Indeed it is a major threat to our survival.

There is no planet B.

Manish Chand, Suva

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