PM hails medics

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama makes his official announcement on the update of COVID-19 to the media as Commissioner of Police Brigadier-General Sitiveni Qiliho looks on from the background during the press conference at Suvavou House in Suva on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. Picture: JONACANI LALAKOBAU

“STAY at home, respect the sacrifices of ourhealthcare heroes and help them save lives.”

That’s the plea from Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama as he publicly commended Fijian health and essential services workers on the frontline in the war against COVID-19.

In a message yesterday, Mr Bainimarama hailed health workers our “heroes”.

“In Fiji, our ‘heroes’ are usually found on the rugby field. It’s how we described our 7s champions in 2016’s Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, and it’s how we saw them as theystood proudly to accept their gold medals as the Fijian national an them played over Brazil,” he said.

“But as the global COVID-19 pandemic has derailed plans for the 2020 games in Tokyo, resulting in their postponement until next year, a new kind of hero is emerging as the pride of Fiji –– our healthcare heroes.They’re not just scoring tries; they’re saving lives.

“These heroes –– our doctors, nurses, disciplined forces and healthcare staff –– are our frontline soldiers in Fiji’s
war against the coronavirus.

“Day in and day out, they don their gowns, face masks and goggles, in isolation wards, hospitals and fever clinics,
putting the lives and wellbeing of others before their own in the campaign to lock down coronavirus.”

He said these Fijian heroes were what we needed in the face of the COVID-19 crisis because they were the “true most valuable players on Team Fiji”.

“Late into last night (Thursday), three hundred of these Fijians, along with many police officers, packed up and moved into and out of the confined area –– many left their families behind –– all so they can continue their life-saving work in our healthcare facilities and in enforcing our health protection measures. They deserve
more than our gratitude, they deserve every measure of our vigilance and discipline in our daily lives to stop the spread of this virus.”

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