Monument to Mark 160 Years of Residence

Built of marble and granite, typical Chinese architecture known to be around as early as 256 BC In the Chinese lunar calendar, 2017 is the Year of the Rooster. And
24 Jan 2017 11:00
Monument to Mark 160 Years of Residence
Jenny Seeto.

Built of marble and granite, typical Chinese architecture known to be around as early as 256 BC

In the Chinese lunar calendar, 2017 is the Year of the Rooster. And the Chinese community here will have a special monument not only to celebrate this special year, but also their 160 years of residence in Fiji.

The monument, at Terry Walk, to be known as the Fiji China Pavilion, will be officially opened by Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama on Saturday.

Built of marble and granite, the pavilion is typical of Chinese architecture which is known to have been around as early as 256 BC.

While they are often found in Chinese temples, pavilions are not exclusively religious structures but are present in many Chinese parks and gardens to provide shade and a place to rest.  They are also used as watchtowers and local government buildings.

“We are honoured at this beautiful gift from the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of The State Council of the People’s Republic of China” said well-known businesswoman and community leader, Jenny Seeto.

“It is in celebration of the arrival of the Chinese People in Fiji 160 years ago,” she said.

Pre-fabricated in China, the Fiji China Pavilion was assembled by Yanjian Group (Fiji) Company Limited.

Ms Seeto is the chair of the New Year/Pavilion Celebration organising committee comprising leaders of the Chinese business, women, youth and sports and social organisations in the country.

“We hope to make the day a festive one on Terry Walk, with local and overseas entertainment and music and food stalls and fun for everyone” Ms Seeto said.

Also launching is a new publication on the history of Chinese families in Fiji which would also be released the same day.

They will be selling the book for the first time marking the 160 thanniversary.

Ms Seeto said: “The book would be a compilation of stories about the Chinese settlement in Fiji including various stories of pioneering Chinese in the country.

“It will give the reader information on the various Chinese Associations too in Fiji.

“Also the book will include stories of Chinese individuals who are prominent in Fiji society today.

“There would be a cultural performance by troop from China.

“Also a lion dance plus a cultural programme will be performed by the  Chinese Youth Social and Cultural Association.

“It is believed to be a good year,” Ms Seeto said of this year’s Chinese New Year.

“We can crow about the good things to come in this coming lunar New Year for the Chinese community and Fiji at large.”

Terry Walk was chosen as the most appropriate venue for the pavilion because Cumming Street was formerly occupied by Chinese shop keepers and businesses in the early days of the 20th Century.

The decision was proposed and formerly endorsed by the Chinese Association of Fiji last year.


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