SUNBIZ

‘Qaqi Mai Bike Share Fiji, Your Traffic Solution’

Being a recipient of the United Nations development programme was a breakthrough for Eliki Dakuitoga.
08 Oct 2022 05:00
‘Qaqi Mai Bike Share Fiji, Your Traffic Solution’
Cycling Fiji Championship 2022 at Sigatoka valley. Inset right: Qaqi Mai Bike Share Fiji founder, Eliki Dakuitoga. Photos: Théo Dumanchin (Facebook)

Being a recipient of the United Nations development programme was a break­through for Eliki Dakuitoga.

Under this programme, Mr Dakuitoga was awarded the top innovative award for his proposal “Qaqi Mai Bike Share Fiji” as a possible solution for Fiji’s transport fuel and traffic problems.

Groomed on the highlands of Navosa, he shares links to Lomanikoro, Bau, Tailevu and Faleatiu, Western Samoa.

The 30-year-old is married with a son.

Cycling Fiji Championship 2022 at Sigatoka valley. Inset right: Qaqi Mai Bike Share Fiji founder, Eliki Dakuitoga. Photos: Théo Dumanchin (Facebook)

Cycling Fiji Championship 2022 at Sigatoka valley. Inset right: Qaqi Mai Bike Share Fiji founder, Eliki Dakuitoga. Photos: Théo Dumanchin (Facebook)

How many places have you been around Fiji?

I’ve had a good share of adventures around Viti-Levu. Mom was a schoolteacher, so we moved around quite a bit as well, serving as far up as Noikoro District School in Navosa crossing over the hinterlands to Vatukaloko Secondary School in Draunivi, Ra. Spent high school at Natabua High in Lautoka.

Spent a few days breaking a leg in Savusavu and other parts of Vanua Levu including Rabi and Kioa. I have been blessed to make memories of the places I’ve been to this far, in our little home paradise of ‘Viti!’

What is your favourite place for coffee or pie and why?

I don’t do coffee much, but I’ve got a taste for a chilled ‘kumquat juice’ at the local mar­ket. I’ve had one better though at the ‘Vasaqa Productions’ in Namaka, Nadi. They’ve got a mean beef brisket to go with. I think it’s to do with growing up on a farm with an abundance of fruits and vegetables. Into the wild of interior Navosa, ‘kumquat juice’ or a blend of banana, watermelon and pawpaw were key beverages on the go-to in hiking the terrains to get from one place to another. I think my love for the ‘kumquat juice’ came here as well. Nothing quenches thirst like a good ‘kumquat juice’ from the market.

What is your favourite backyard spot?

I’m a recovering alcoholic so I’d been used to a couple of beers around the bonfire on the eve. There’s something about the fire and the crackling sounds of the wood in flames as I sip on a good pint of Fiji Bitter. I don’t drink alcohol now but whose to say that a nice cuppa by the fire with your wife on a chill afternoon could do the same trick? It’s defi­nitely the fireplace for me and if you don’t catch me there, ask my wife. I’m sure she’s got me stashed up somewhere in the house. Her favourite backyard spot is anywhere I’d be, that’s for sure.

What is one place in Fiji you would take visi­tors and why?

A hike up the sleeping giant in Nadi is a must for me. The mist of the famed ‘sleeping giant’ has many tales. A prominent one at that is the first settlement of our islands by our ancestral sea-fearers back in the day. A version of the story goes that the captain of their vessel, once docking in Viseisei, Vuda was so tired on their long voyage decided to take a rest getting off. He laid down and as time swept by he remained ever being the iconic figure of what we’ve come to know to­day as the Sleeping Giant.

Mind you this was no ordinary Captain for he was a giant whose figure has drawn lo­cals and foreigners across the country to get a glimpse. If the Captain was a Giant, were they a crew of sea-fearing giants, I wonder? No matter the version of the story, the hike up the mountains for me is but a simple ex­change with nature. To feel its embrace and be humbled by the vastness of its flora and fauna in its own space and energy. Although it still is awesome to walk on the belly of a giant at the same time, a sleeping one at that, you wouldn’t ask for more. Shhhhh, he’s still sleeping!

What is one place in Fiji you would like to visit and why more like your bucket list?

I’m stuck with Taveuni and Kadavu. Be­sides the geography of the place, it’s the peo­ple that make them more special.

I’ve got blood relatives in Taveuni, and I’ve always wanted to visit Fiji’s native ‘Tagimou­cia Flower.’ I’ve also heard about how exotic and ‘out of the planet’ the place is or more so, ‘out of Fiji’ Taveuni is as it is a place so dif­ferent and special it’s like no other.

Kadavu has always had an incognito vibe on me. My ancestral homeland by blood has some links to this island and the ‘mana’ of our shared myths and legends coincide.

Although I feel it’s the stories of people I’ve met who have been there taking many roots to draw me to this island. I’ll definitely know it for sure when I’m on the other side of the bridge. I guess Taveuni wins the take on this one. It’s moving up the bucket list right now.

Feedback: sosiveta.korobiau@fijisun.com.fj



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