Be With Family In Festive Time

  Be with your family every day this festive season. Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama made this call in a special Christmas message to the Fiji Corrections Service staff at their
14 Dec 2015 12:59
Be With Family In Festive Time
Fiji Corrections Service inmate,Qaranivalu Ratu inoke Takiveikata hugs Prime Minister,Voreqe Bainamarama during the Fiji Corrections Church service at ANZ Stadium yesterday. pic……RAMA


Be with your family every day this festive season.

Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama made this call in a special Christmas message to the Fiji Corrections Service staff at their church service at the ANZ Stadium, in Suva, yesterday.

His call came before a poignant moment when Mr Bainimarama embraced jailed paramount chief of Naitasiri, Turaga na Qaranivalu, Ratu Inoke Takiveikata and his special stage inmates.

The embrace was symbolic of the Christmas spirit and gave cheer to those present.

It was a fitting end to a service that emphasised peace and stability in the families first before we extend it to the wider community.

In his appeal to male staff of FSC, Mr Bainimarama said plans for the festive celebrations were already in place for most families.

However, most of the fathers, he said had their own plans that would see them absent from the family celebration.

“I appeal to you fathers to be with the family during the celebrations,” he said.

He said they must not only be present during the celebrations but with the family every day.

“You have to be with your family every day to provide protection for all members.”

He said his main Christmas message was for women and children not to be abused.

“I want to take this opportunity to remind everyone here that we must take very seriously the need to end domestic violence and sexual assault in our society. “

He said that this was an issue that was very important to him personally because it got to the very heart of what kind of people they were and what kind of people they expected to be.

Mr Bainimarama said the same message was delivered to the Republic of Fiji Military Force (RFMF) upon his request by the Acting Commander, Rear Admiral Viliame Naupoto at their church service last Friday.

The Acting Commander had told all male staff of the RFMF if they abused their wives and children they would be terminated from the institution.

Speaking at Ratu Cakobau Park last Friday he said – “When we allow violence to persist in our most intimate settings, such as our homes, that creates an infection of destructive behaviour that spreads throughout our society, and it is our collective responsibility to prevent that from happening.” Currently, there is zero tolerance in our legal system for sexual assault and domestic violence – however, we need create a culture that condemns these sorts of crimes before they take place.

FCS spokesperson Kuini Waqasavou confirmed that all the inmates who attended the church service were classed special stage inmates.

This group she said had the faith of the FSC because they were supportive and of good behavior.

She said they were leaders in the Corrections Centres they were in.

“They lead the work and other activities carried out by inmates inside the Corrections Centres,” she said.

They were the role models, she said. Special privileges they enjoyed included:  locked late into their cells; watch television; allowed family visits  during the weekend.

Ratu Inoke was sentenced to life imprisonment by High Court Judge, Justice Daniel Goundar on 2011 after he was convicted of inciting the 2000 mutiny at Queen Elizabeth Barracks.

He is not eligible for parole for a period of eight years and Justice Goundar had ruled that he should not be released until March 2019.

Edited by Nemani Delaibatiki


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