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Don’t Let Age Drag You Down: Butadroka

There is no limitation to education. Here I am at the age of 49 going on to 50, now a fully fledged lawyer. These were the words of former Accountant
22 Feb 2018 14:44
Don’t Let Age Drag You Down: Butadroka
Joji Butadroka 49, following the admission of twenty new lawyers into the Bar by Chief Justice Anthony Gates on February 21, 2018. Photo: Ronald Kumar

There is no limitation to education. Here I am at the age of 49 going on to 50, now a fully fledged lawyer.

These were the words of former Accountant Joji Butadroka who realised his dream of becoming a lawyer when he was admitted to the bar at the High Court in Suva along with 19 fellow graduates yesterday.

Mr Butadroka worked as a full-time accountant for 24 years before he decided to quit his job in 2011 to pursue law at the University of the South Pacific (USP).

He said: “People in their early and late 20s and 30s should not hesitate to go back to school. Do not limit your potential. Find where your calling is and pursue it.”

“Due to personal and financial reasons I could not attend law school and the only option available to me then was to enter the workforce and since I had an interest in Accounting I pursued that field of work.”

He said his passion for law never escaped his mind.

“I tried taking up a few law courses while I was working but then I found it difficult to juggle assignments and I found that I could not compromise my work, so I left work to pursue full-time studies.”

Mr Butadroka said not earning an income was a challenge for him as he had to manage with whatever little funding he had.

“As a person in my late 40s studying with students who were the same age as my daughter had its bad and good side in that I was able to relate to them in terms of their difficulties, and I was like a father figure to them, and they would share their problems with me,” he said.

Mr Butadroka went on to study in Vanuatu for a period of two years which he says was an enjoyable, learning experience for him.

“In a way studying with young people in Vanuatu sort of mitigated the fact that I was away from my wife and three children.”

Mr Butadroka plans to specialise in both criminal and civil law.

Edited by Mohammed Zulfikar

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