Letters to the Editor 28.8.17

Civil servants Sake Ratu, New Zealand Finally Fijian civil servants are being held accountable. During my recent visit to Fiji, I was rather pleasantly surprised how things have changed. The
28 Aug 2017 10:37
Letters to the Editor 28.8.17

Civil servants
Sake Ratu, New Zealand
Finally Fijian civil servants are being held accountable. During my recent visit to Fiji, I was rather pleasantly surprised how things have changed. The civil servants we came across were courteous and helpful.
But boy do we have horror stories about civil servants from early 1990s. Being on tenure they took the jobs for granted and took the Fijian public for granted, treated public with disdain and had superiority complex.
If putting them on contracts get them to do their jobs, so be it.
Leweni Waqa the Great
Taitusi Sokiveta, Phoenix, Arizona
Fiji has had heavyweight boxing champions through the years but no one was as great as Leweni Waqa.
In fact, Waqa was the Joe Levula of boxing.
In 1971 when Waqa fought Filimoni Naliva at the Varadoli movie theatre in Ba Town it was like an amateur fighting a professional.
The only reason why Waqa lost was that he was out of shape.
He hardly trained for the fight. He lost out of total exhaustion.
The guy who carried out Waqa out holding out his arm around his shoulder was Ratu Semi Kolikata, commonly known at the Suva waterfront as Tu Semi. He now lives in Sacramento, California.
I went to Lowline, Lautoka, to stay with my late aunt Adi of Bua so I could travel by bus to Nadi to watch the inter-district soccer tournament at Prince Charles Park.
When I returned late on Saturday afternoon there was talk in town that four Lautoka General Buses were taking people to the fight.
Waqa resided in Lautoka at the time with his wife, Kuini.
I grabbed the chance and went on the Lautoka General Bus with the rest of the fight crowd.
I was glad in a way that Waqa lost because the crowd would have beaten him to death. Tu Semi was very brave even though he was his second.
If it wasn’t for Ratu Semi, Waqa would not have made it out alive in that theatre.
I was scared to death and kept my mouth shut during the whole fight.
We boarded the Lautoka General Bus and we had to put the tarpaulin down because the driver said to avoid being hit by flying stones.
In 1967, during the Boys Scout Fiji Jamboree, I was with the Wainibuka first platoon to Vatukoula where the Jamboree was held.
After the event, my elder brother Keith Smith said to spend some time with him. So I stayed and I got to see Waqa train at the Fijian Barracks.
Even though he was from Sawaieke, Gau Island, he was raised and grew up in Matanaqata, Vatukoula.
I remember one time a sparring partner hit him seven times he missed. Waqa had his hands on his waist and only stared at the guy’s foot.
It was unbelievable.
His time was so perfect in ducking the punches.
When Waqa was training in Vatukoula at the Fijian Barracks the crowd was always there, packed to capacity to get a glimpse of him.
That was how great he was.
He fought many great fighters in the British Commonwealth Championship and the world with top contenders like Jimmy Ellis, Muhammad Ali’s sparring partner.
Waqa was a top contender for the World Cruiserweight Division many times.
He was the first Fijian boxer to be rated in the world of boxing in The Ring Magazine, the world boxing magazine at that time. He was a quiet gentlemen and did all his talking in the ring.
Waqa to me will always be Fiji’s greatest fighter of all time.
Teaching service
Livi Kalou, New Zealand
Seeing the level of engagement teachers are having with a Senior Minister in the Fijian Government makes me want to back to Fiji and teach there. This is simply amazing.
In my many years as a school teacher in New Zealand, I have not seen such level of engagement and input from teachers. Such consultations may soon put unionists out of business.
Fiji GPS land plans
Joe Smith, Deuba
Surprisingly, no one in the recent Fiji surveyors conference complained about Government’s latest vanua land plan setup which has glaring errors.
Google searches show Fiji’s all key sites, including hospitals, resorts, bridges, rivers, towns whereas Lands Ministry’s programme is loaded with thousands of land mataqali names and too strenuous to locate specific lots.
Football ranking
Vijay Kumar, Votualevu
Gamel is really making a difference with our football.
We hope he can do the same as the Flying Fijians and take us up in the world rankings.
Good luck to Roy and the boys in Indonesia.
Traffic jams
Ereni Donu, Suva
In this forum I must add my piece on the increase of cars on our roads which have resulted in the daily traffic jams.
Whilst the cost of cars are more affordable for the ordinary citizens, it has begun a mammoth problem that needs to be addressed now before it escalates any further.
Travelling early to work and school to avoid traffic jams is not the solution. It only produces tired and non-productive individuals and ‘clock-watchers’ who rush home to put the dinner on the table are usually too tired to do their chores and homework.
It will also affect the safety of individuals who are travelling long distances to get home after work and school.
The long ‘snail’ journey to and from one’s destination will lead to a rise in stress, lateness to work and school, loss in income by individuals and public transport owners eventually resulting in a very sluggish economy.
I look forward to Government’s attention to improve our bus transportation and an easier way to travel from point A to B without stress and time-wasting.

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

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