Letters to the Editor – Friday, August 5, 2022

Eileen Cikamatana (middle) with her medal during 2022 Commonwealth Games Birmingham, England. Picture: AUSTRALIAN WEIGHTLIFTING FEDERATION FACEBOOK PAGE

Commonwealth Games coverage

THANK you The Fiji Times for your extensive coverage on the Commonwealth Games. Inspiring stories indeed and good to see Rohit Deo reporting directly from the games village. This type of initiative and innovative reporting actually keeps us directly connected to the games and behind the scenes events. We can’t imagine this through live pictures on TV and reading brings more emotions. Big cheers for Eileen and gold for Australia and Rainbogi for the bronze Vinaka to Bau bullet Banuve, you were up there among the best, keep it going. To the rest, all the best and we look forward to more Rohit Deo diaries. Vinaka kaukauwa Viti times joka dina. Go Viti. Go SHALWYN PRASAD Nabua, Suva

Symptoms of a sick society

HOUSES have burglar bars or gothic mesh over doors and windows and barbed wire fences. With a couple of dogs in the compound and a security guard monitoring the premises. Neighbourhood shops are built like prisons or jailhouses with a small hole through the burglar bars to pass items to buying customers. Seems like a society that has some kind of sickness to deal with as our homes and stores have these features. MELI MATANATOTO Suva

US-China face-off

THE Chinese army sprang up into an aggressive military drill because of the presence of American military ships in the South China Sea and the visit of Nancy Pelosi, the US House speaker to South East Asia including Taiwan. China warned US President Joe Biden not to play with fire. Despite China’s flurry of military threats and brinkmanship, Nancy still visited Japan and other destinations including Taiwan. Nancy’s plane was escorted by eight American fighter jets. China could not carry out its threat. Thus, Chinese bluff was called by the US. In my view any such scenario is unsettling for the stability and world peace. Superpowers must act responsibly and desist from any military brinkmanship. DEWAN CHAND Namadi Heights, Suva

Health hazard

THE fresh juice and roti parcel sellers of Lautoka City have been relocated to a most disgusting site from which to sell their juice and food items. These vendors are selling in a small squalid area. Empty rubbish bins are scattered there and less than two metres away are the public toilets of Lautoka bus stand. The toilet doors open directly in front of the vendors’ juice and roti tables. It is most disconcerting for the toilet users too because they are watched when they enter and re-emerge after using the toilets. It’s likely that some customers come out directly from the toilet and without washing their hands, buy roti and use the drinking glasses which another customer then uses. If that is not bad enough, imagine eating and drinking there while facing the opened doors and looking beyond into the toilets. And how about the smell and bacteria that escape into the atmosphere. If there is an area from which food-related diseases such as dysentery and typhoid may emerge from, this will be a prime area. Where are the health inspectors and the Lautoka City administrators? You owe a duty to the vendors to allocate a more conducive location as the vendors pay their fees to you; and likewise you have an important national duty to keep the public safe from diseases. The area is a potential time bomb if nothing is done. WILLIAM ROSA Ba

Child marriage in the Pacific

I BELIEVE this is another topic which we hardly discuss at our homes or any social or religious gatherings. According to our Fiji laws, the definition of a child means anyone under the age of 18 who is considered a minor or a child. I believe we have had cases here in Fiji in the past where a student was impregnated by a male teacher and she was forced by her parents and members of that particular community to marry the teacher so everything could look more legal and acceptable in the eyes of the community. The girl is also forced into marriage so she can have a future and little do we realise that we are entertaining child marriage if the girl has not reached the legal age of 18. I believe our laws also say if a child is below 18 years, for marriage the child needs consent from both parents. These laws need to be reviewed because it basically condones and encourage child marriage which does not augur well with the UN Declaration on the Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) which our Fijian Government ratified in 1993. JIOJI MASIVESI CAKACAKA, Tadra,Votualevu, Nadi

Stage set for Fiji finals

THE Triple N Zone concluded on Tuesday at the HFC Stadium and minnows Nakasi High School sprung a major surprise, winning the overall boys title. ACS was expected to walk away with the overall girl’s title, but Nakasi High School set a benchmark for many other schools in Fiji. MGM High School was crowned the winner of the overall girl’s title in Suva Zone Two and this shows that the standard of competition is fierce and prominent schools should be ready for upsets on game day. After a lapse of two years, the Fiji Finals are back and athletes are ready to show their stuff. They are ready to impress athletics selectors for the Pacific Games. Back to the Triple N Zone and Nakasi High School showed that with the right mindset, correct attitude, hard work, determination and will power, success on the tracks is achievable. Hearty congrats to the principal Mr Praveen Chand, his staff and the dedicated athletes for this achievement and for breaking records at the Triple N Zone! Such success will inspire our athletes for the Fiji Finals! RAJNESH ISHWAR LINGAM Nadawa, Nasinu

Cikamatana creates history

EILEEN Cikamatana had the last laugh in Birmingham. The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games gold medallist defended her title, wearing the green and gold jumper. She made Commonwealth Games history, becoming the first woman to win gold medals for two countries. The 22-year-old dominated the 87kg, setting Games records in the snatch, clean and jerk and overall for Australia’s first gold medal in weightlifting. She also won the 90kg category four years ago for Fiji on the Gold Coast. It’s a pity we did not value Eileen’s prowess and let our own ego surge over her blooming career, but I’m glad she made a massive statement. Imagine if Eileen was with Fiji, we would be on the gold medal podium instead of Australia! The Fiji Times captured it well on the front page, “Fiji’s loss, Aussie gold” (04/08). All the best Eileen! On the other hand, I congratulate the “Cage Man” for winning bronze in weightlifting. Taniela Rainibogi, who hails from Savusavu, secured Fiji’s third medal! The expression on his face said it all! RAJNESH ISHWAR LINGAM Nadawa, Nasinu

Bronze champion

THE media needs to get their facts right. Fiji’s Commonwealth Games weightlifting bronze medallist, Taniela “Dan” Rainibogi aka “Cage Man”, is not from Naweni, Cakaudrove. He hails from Malaka, Vanuabalavu, but was born and bred in Levuka, Ovalau. And yes, we do breed champions on Ovalau. Again, congratulations to Dan and Eileen. O Naova Ke. ANTHONY SAHAI Levuka, Ovalau

Simply awesome

EILEEN Cikamatana, Fiji’s loss and now Australia’s massive gain displayed brutal performance to claim 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games weightlifting gold. A new record too. She is uniquely special. Having claimed for Fiji fours years ago, she now repeats the same magical performance for her adopted home, Australia. Our heartiest congratulations must go to Eileen. She brings enormous pride to her family and Australia. We wish her every success and rewards as she journeys through her weightlifting life and beyond. Well done and simply awesome. RONNIE CHANG Martintar, Nadi

Putin threat

IS the whole world frightened of Putin. SUKHA SINGH Labasa

Being drained

I GUESS with all the floods and rain, in the most unusual of places, the swamp is now being drained, of all the blockage nuisances, that had stuck fast and hardened, because it has been there for ages. The thick layers, of sludge and grime, are now being cleared away, for the very first time. EDWARD BLAKELOCK Pacific Harbour

Public uproar

PUBLIC uproar: Residents condemn $56m Australian-funded project (FT 4/8) reminded me of the 1973 book by USP intellectuals called Fiji A Developing Australian Colony in which Jone Dakuvula had asked “Development for whom?” I think the residents in Lami might have the same question regarding the project sited smack in the middle of their residential area. RAJEND NAIDU Sydney, Australia

Airport name

NAUSORI International Airport is situated in Nausori on the South-Eastern side of Viti Levu. Just wondering why it is referred as Suva airport on websites and promotional advertisements when it’s situated in Nausori. I reckon if it’s stated as Nausori International Airport, only then foreigners and outside world will come to know about Nausori. Let’s make Nausori feel proud of itself by naming it as Nausori International Airport both locally and abroad on websites and promotional advertisements! SHAMAL CHAND Kuku Bau Rd, Nausori

Election date

ALL countries reveal their national election dates except Fiji which indicates the date to start campaigns but keeps voters guessing. DAN URAI Lautoka

Taxi permits

I HAVE a question for the LTA, police and the Minister for Transport: why taxi permits are given for a certain area yet they are operating from city and town? Please clarify under what circumstances the permit was issued? MOHAMMED ABID Lautoka

Political gifts

ACCORDING to the A-G Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum “There is nothing wrong with an individual who has the gumption, who has the transparency to say, I am donating this much money to a political party” (FT 1/8). I don’t think having the gumption or the transparency has anything to do with making political donations. It’s the first time I am hearing that being advanced as a reason for political donations. RAJEND NAIDU Sydney, Australia

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