NEWS

Tour Guide Honoured

Emi Mata Naivitio, awarded by the President after saving a tourist from drowning in March A tour guide, who dislocated her shoulder while saving a tourist from drowning during a
17 Oct 2015 09:28
Tour Guide Honoured
President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau with the President Medal receipient Emi Mata Navitio after the Order of Fiji Investiture Ceremony at Government House yesterday. PHOTO JONA KONATACI.

Emi Mata Naivitio, awarded by the President after saving a tourist from drowning in March

A tour guide, who dislocated her shoulder while saving a tourist from drowning during a trekking activity earlier this year, was awarded a President’s Medal- one of the highest honours- for her bravery yesterday.

Emi Mata Naivitio, 26, was among the 28 people who were awarded for their achievements or meritorious services under the Order of Fiji by the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau at Government House in Suva.

She is a tour guide with Tourist Transport of Fiji in Nadi.

In March this year, Ms Naivitio and a colleague led a group of eight tourists for a trekking and waterfall trip to Wainiyabia, Serua.

The group was joined by a male tourist who she said was from Uprising Beach Resort in Pacific Harbour on their way. She said it had been raining heavily and the trek was slippery so they briefed all their tourists about it and advised them not to jump into the pools because they saw the water level was rising.

Ms Naivitio said without their knowledge, the tourist from Uprising Beach Resort jumped into the pool and was sucked in because of the strong water currents.

“He was struggling for his life, he was waving. I didn’t know until the time some of our guests yelled out that he was drowning. I just jumped in without any second thought and tried pulling him out,” she said.

“On my first attempt he pulled me in as well because he was huge. You know how everybody would be struggling for their lives they can just do anything. He kind of like pulled me down and at the same time I was grasping for air.

“I then kicked him. He let go so I came out of the water and grasped some air once, twice and then dived back in,” she said.

Ms Naivitio said she managed to pull out the tourist on her second attempt. Unfortunately he was unconscious.

“He was all red, blood had stopped flowing, some of the guests were crying, some of them were shouting because they knew what was going on they knew he was gone.

“I punched his chest twice, he coughed out about a litre of water and then I got to know that he was safe. By the time I wanted to lie back and just relax because I was tired as well, I got sucked in again.

“By the time it threw me out the current slapped my face right straight to a rock. I tried to save my face and my head but then I got stuck between two rocks so I dislocated my shoulder while trying to save him.”

She said the recognition for her braveness would be one she would cherish forever.

“Thanks to the Almighty too for giving me a second chance; cheating death to save two lives, mine and the life of that tourist that day.

“I’m just overwhelmed with kindness and love and everything because just a young person like me receiving this medal is very hard and rare.

“Today will be with me forever. This is like one of the most cherished memory of my life. I would say it’s more like a story of my life,” Ms Naivitio said.

Feedback: aqela.susu@fijisun.com.fj

 




Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus
Subscribe-to-Newspaper
error: