Celebrating A Centenarian’s Life

 This is the full speech of President Major-General (Ret’d) Jioji Konousi Konrote during the welcome at the celebration of the  100th birthday for Benina Ciriavesi, held at the Samabula
08 Jul 2016 10:53
Celebrating A  Centenarian’s Life
Birthday girl Ms Benina Ciriavesi's celebrates her 100th birthday at the Old People's Home in Samabula

This is the full speech of President Major-General (Ret’d) Jioji Konousi Konrote during the welcome at the celebration of the  100th birthday for Benina Ciriavesi, held at the Samabula Senior Citizens’ Home yesterday.

The Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Rosy Akba, our birthday lady-Ms Benina Ciriavesi, residents of the Samabula Senior Citizens’ Home, distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen


Ni sa bula vinaka to you all and especially to Nau Benina Ciriavesi as we gather to congratulate and recognise the milestone achievement of reaching 100 years of age.

I wish to thank the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation for officially extending the invitation to be part of this occasion to recognize a senior citizen who has reached a ripe age of 100 years.

A Centenarian is a person who lives to or beyond the age of 100 years. In 2012, the United Nations estimated that there were 316,600 living centenarians worldwide.

As life expectancy is increasing across the world, and the world population has also increased rapidly, the number of centenarians is expected to rise more in the future.

I personally hope that more Fijians will live to be Centenarians like Nau Benina and to continue to enjoy God’s gift of life.

I met Nau Benina during my last visit to this lovely Home in December 2015. I was advised that Nau Benina was 99 years old at that time.

I also remember asking her to let me know when she turns 100. I am grateful and equally impressed that Nau Benina has a very good memory, which has led to our second meeting.

I have yet to ask her, but I can already see that Nau Benina has looked after her health very well in her younger days and that is why she is able to live up to 100 years.

Unfortunately, many other Fijians are dying before the age of 70 years. I have been advised by the health officials that the main cause of deaths for those who die before they are 70 years is due to non-communicable diseases.

As Fiji’s lead advocate in the campaign to control NCDs, I encourage all Fijians to take the cue from Nau Benina and choose to live a healthier and happier life.

Let us change our lifestyle including our diet, and let us take part in more physical activity like exercising, gardening or simply walking for a good 30-minutes each day.

I am aware that Nau Benina, like a few other residents, have stayed at the Home for several years. I think it is only appropriate that we also acknowledge the partnership of the Ministry of Health and Medical Services and the good staff of the Samabula Home, for their due diligence in providing care to our senior citizens.

I have every confidence that the Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation which has taken over the Homes from this year will continue to provide quality care for our elderly who join the Homes.

Ladies and gentlemen, let us now wish Nau Benina a very Happy Birthday and thank her also for showing that Fijians can live up to 100years and enjoy life to the fullest.

May the Almighty God continue to Bless you Nau Benina, and bless our beloved Nation Fiji.

Thank you, shukhriya, hahoot daynavaad and vinaka vakalevu.


Feedback:  jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

Fijisun E-edition
Total Excellium
Fiji Sun Instagram