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All Is Forgiven: Ratu Epenisa

All Is Forgiven: Ratu Epenisa
Bau chief, Ratu Epenisa Cakobau (middle), with Dharmend Singh and Bhanravi Chand. Photo: Ratu Epenisa Cakobau / Facebook
January 19
12:12 2018

Bau chief, Ratu Epenisa Cakobau, yesterday applauded the efforts of two men, who had allegedly abused him  on social media, for seeking his forgiveness in the traditional iTaukei manner.

The ceremony of ‘matanigasau’ took place at the chief’s residence in Lami yesterday as he prepared to lead a delegation from Bau to the funeral of a relative.

“The two gentlemen came home today to present their matanigasau. Thank you, gentlemen. I love our culture,’’ Ratu Epenisa posted on his Facebook page.

The effort to seek forgiveness came about after Ratu Epenisa had lodged a report to Police on Monday at the Nakasi Police Station following postings on Facebook by the two men.

It is alleged that the two men, Dharmend Singh and Bhanravi Chand, had verbally abused Ratu Epenisa for his participation in the Fiji Trades Union Congress-organised march in Nadi last Saturday, in support of the remaining striking Air Terminal Services employees.

Yesterday the Fiji Sun contacted Mr Singh and Mr Chand to verify the reasons behind their move to seek forgiveness in the traditional manner.

Mr Singh, an assistant manager at Rup’s Big Bear in Marks Street, Suva, said: “Since he is a big chief, the Police advised us to do the ‘matanigasau’ because it’s a proper channel to follow.”

They took a ‘tabua’ (whales tooth), yaqona, dalo, and some fish for the ‘matanigasau’.

“We were impressed and happy with the way Ratu Epenisa welcomed us when we visited him,” Mr Singh said.

“We have asked for forgiveness and he has accepted it, which tells us that he is really a big chief … the way he talked to us.”

Mr Singh said they were told by Ratu Epenisa that he would be there for them if the matter should be heard in court.

Mr Chand said: “We are now relieved after the ‘matanigasau’. Ratu Epenisa is a very simple and humble man and we are proud with the way he accepted us.”

The chief was obviously in a happy mood as he and his family had just celebrated his birthday yesterday.

The post of the ‘matanigasau’ had attracted 109 comments, 333 shares and 1000 reactions as 5.45pm yesterday. The numbers are expected to rise further.

Police spokesperson Ana Naisoro yesterday confirmed the case was filed at the Nakasi Police Station on Monday.

Ms Naisoro said: “Investigation has been completed, and the file has been forwarded to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) for advice.”

There were some positive comments on Ratu Epenisa’s Facebook page.

Here are a few:

Tupou Vulagi Dau: Thank you Ratu Epenisa for accepting them with a good heart

Jess M Mule: Chiefs are from God

Lodynbill Nalolo: Thank you Ratu Epenisa for forgiving them. May God Bless you.

Kacau Ni Gau: Thank you gentlemen. I love Fijian culture

Marc McElrath: Thank you Ratu for accepting them. A few of our people in this country could learn from this.

Mereani Bawa Kamuanga: This will be great lesson to all of Fiji and abroad not to cross their boundaries and to know that there are lines to draw when it comes to speaking to a prominent chief like you Ratu.

Aben Dean: The way Fiji should be.

Samuela Tuidravu: A great Fijian leader

James Hamaguchi: Thank you Sir. That is the true chiefly spirit that shows the love of the people and that clearly indicates that our culture is very well alive. You stay blessed sir.

Ropate Robanakadavu: Only in Fiji

Eci Kikau Nabalarua: Be the champion and the role model that you are of tolerance, humility and multicultural diversity. Blessing always.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedback:  lusiana.tuimaisala@fijisun.com.fj

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