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Dr Waqainabete: I Am A Fijian First And Foremost

  Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete says while he is iTaukei he is first and foremost a Fijian. In an impassioned maiden speech in Parliament yesterday, the Minister for Health and Medical
01 Dec 2018 10:00
Dr Waqainabete: I Am A Fijian First And Foremost
Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete outside the parliament house on November 30,2018.Photo:Simione Haravanua.

 

Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete says while he is iTaukei he is first and foremost a Fijian.

In an impassioned maiden speech in Parliament yesterday, the Minister for Health and Medical Services said when he was branded a traitor, it was very difficult for him to accept.

He said during the election campaign he was called a traitor and because of this, his son in New Zealand was also told that he was a son of a traitor.

Describing his family background, Dr Waqainabete said: “I am an iTaukei of iTaukei. But I am first and foremost a Fijian.

“When we talk about relationship Madam Speaker, this is me. I am from Tovata, my mother is from Burebasaga and I am married to Kubuna. When we talk about land this is me. I have land in Tovata in Moala, I have land in my mother’s village in Navosa and already my wife is planting and thinking of leasing land in Naitasiri. So I have land in Tovata, Burebasaga and also in Kubuna.”

He added that he would champion equality because of his back- ground and also because of his granddaughter, Miriama Waqainabete, who has multiple heritage, iTaukei, Rotuman and part European.

Mr Waqainabete also highlighted that God had answered all their prayers.

He said the makeup of Parliament was God answering their prayers.

“God has declared his will. God’s will is FijiFirst to govern and our other colleagues from SODELPA and NFP to fill the Opposition chambers,” he said.

He also added that as a newly appointed minister, he was aware of the great expectations of the Fijian people.

“I pledge to them my absolute commitment to improve health service delivery in Fiji for all Fijians,” he said.

Mr Waqainabete had already challenged the ministry staff for hard work, dedication and professionalism to give all Fijians the best service possible.

Mr Waqainabete also made clarifications on the claims made by the Opposition about the Public Private Partnership to boost health services that it was some kind of international debt trap that would increase poverty.

“Madam Speaker, the truth is this: the PPP will come at no additional cost to the patients or the Fijian taxpayer and will incur absolutely no debt to Government.”

Mr Waqainabete acknowledged all his supporters, family, friends and loved ones especially his wife and his father and late mother for believing in him.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedback: selita.bolanavanua@fijisun.com.fj



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