NATION

Naupoto Commissions First RFMF Navy Band

The Commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto could not contain his emotions as he witnessed one of his dreams in the RFMF come
19 Sep 2020 11:15
Naupoto Commissions First RFMF Navy Band
Sitting seventh from left: Acting Chief of Navy Commander Marika Vosawale, Commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto, members of the RFMF Navy Band and RFMF officers during the commissioning of the pioneering RFMF Navy Band at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Nabua on September 18, 2020. Photo: Inoke Rabonu

The Commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto could not contain his emotions as he witnessed one of his dreams in the RFMF come to fruition yesterday.

Commander Naupoto commissioned the pioneering RFMF Naval division band in a parade at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Nabua.

In July 2018, Commander Naupoto made his intentions known at the RFMF band room of the need to establish a Navy band.

Two years later, after intense auditioning and training, the pioneering band was successfully commissioned.

“Friday, September 18, 2020 will be recorded as the day the Republic of Fiji Military Forces Navy band was formally established and the day the RFMF had two brass bands,” Commander Naupoto said.

“Today’s entry into the history books of the RFMF adds to the long colourful and proud history of the RFMF.”

He said the RFMF Navy Band was a direct product of the RFMF Band.

“The RFMF Band has always been the busiest unit in the force. They have their role in the force to engage in. Then there was their role in the band to perform, they were usually always busy.

“The navy band will work in conjunction with the RFMF band in carrying out the duty required of the band and now with two bands they will be able to share the very heavy workload currently shouldered by the RFMF band.”

Members of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces Navy Band during the commissioning at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Nabua on September 18, 2020. Photo: Inoke Rabonu

Members of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces Navy Band during the commissioning at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Nabua on September 18, 2020. Photo: Inoke Rabonu

Commander Naupoto said he was happy to see the young men and women in the new band.

He said most members of the RFMF Naval Division Band were products of the National Youth Band and the Young Peoples Department (YPD) in Davuilevu.

“I was emotional because I know the background of those kids,” he said.

Commander Naupoto said he was introduced to YPD School when he was the Minister for Youth and Sports.

“I would go up to their school and it used to be only a garage full of old machines.

“I would see these kids come in the morning and some would sleep there and they would have no bus fare to come back the next day.

“They were so determined to continue and to me, it sends a message to young people that, life is not always about giving up.”

Meanwhile, Commander Naupoto yesterday revealed that his term as commander will end in March 2021.

Quarantine breaching

Commander Naupoto said the RFMF personnel who came under the spotlight for breaching quarantine procedures at a Government funded quarantine facility will be dealt with severely.

Commander Naupoto confirmed that there was an officer who was implicated offence.

Commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto speaking during the commissioning of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces Navy Band at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Nabua on September 18, 2020. Photo: Inoke Rabonu

Commander of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces (RFMF) Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto speaking during the commissioning of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces Navy Band at the Queen Elizabeth Barracks in Nabua on September 18, 2020.
Photo: Inoke Rabonu

“We are serious with what we do in the quarantine facilities and the last thing we would want to be doing for those coming into quarantine or those looking after quarantine is to be breaking those protocols otherwise the whole thought of quarantine is null and void.

He said he has sent out a message to personnel at quarantine facilities to be vigilant with their work.

Home rebuilt

Commander Naupoto also confirmed that the RFMF Engineers has built a new home for Semiti Koroi of Wailailai Squatter Settlement at Nabua.

This happened a day after an unfortunate accident that led to Mr Koroi’s home being damaged by a tree that was felled by the soldiers.

He said the child that was injured in the process is recovering well at the hospital.

Edited by Selita Bolanavanua

Feedback: inoke.rabonu@fijisun.com.fj

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