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Business Partner And Friend Honours Dixon Seeto

He said he was deeply saddened when informed of Mr Seeto’s passing.
21 Jul 2019 16:01
Business Partner And Friend Honours Dixon Seeto
The Seeto family with close family friend and business partner Hafiz Khan (right) during the opening of Yadua Bay Resort and Villas in May.

Hafiz Khan remembers Dixon Seeto not only as business partner but a childhood friend and dedicated family man.

Mr Khan and the late Mr Seeto were business partners in the Hexagon Group of Hotels.

He said he was deeply saddened when informed of Mr Seeto’s passing.

Mr Seeto had died in Australia past Friday after being airlifted there after being badly injured in a road accident near Sigatoka.

“I’ve known him for 65 years,” he said.

“We went to school together and we’ve been childhood friends and he was a dedicated family man who was very professional and was also dedicated to the country.

“He is leaving a living legacy and has left a huge vacuum most definitely for the Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association and the total tourism industry.”

Mr Khan said Mr Seeto had led the FHTA for nearly 16 years as the president and was unopposed because the people knew that he served very diligently and loyally.

“He was very dedicated and disciplined in terms of what needs to be done for the total industry in Fiji.

“His knowledge of the industry in Fiji is probably nor surpassed by anyone in Fiji.

“He was a great connection to government for us because he could talk to people and could relate and knew how to put across ideas diplomatically.

“He joined the Hexagon Group 16 years ago.

“He actually didn’t want to go into business with me because he didn’t want to jeopardise our friendship but when he made the decision to come he said he came for a lifetime and that’s what it has been.

“He was fifty percent of our frontage because he related well to the public since I am not a good public speaker and people knew him as Hexagon because he was always in the front and it’s a sad loss for us.

Mr Khan said Mr Seeto worked for Air Pacific (now Fiji Airways) for many years, Tappoos, Blue Lagoon Cruise and also Warwick Hotel.

“Wherever he went people will tell you that he worked diligently and loyally for anyone that he worked for and any organisation that he either chaired or represented he was very dedicated.

“He accepted me as his elder brother and he was my brother.”

Bill Whiting

Fiji Tourism in Excellence Awards Trustee and Pacific Bedbank Chairman Bill Whiting said tourism had lost a great leader.

“I think tourism in Fiji has lost a great leader.

“He had Fiji and Tourism in his heart and has made an overwhelming contribution over many years.

“Many years ago he was recognised as being a leader.

“He was on the board of the National Bank of Fiji and he resigned because he was unhappy with the way it was being handled and that was before the disaster unfolded.

“He was a man of great integrity and great ethics because I worked very closely with him on the board of FHTA as well as trustee for the Fiji Excellence in Tourism Awards.

“He was highly energetic and was committed to whatever he undertook.

“Despite his very heavy workload he became a trustee for the Fiji Tourism Awards and he was very committed.

“Through the challenges of the global financial crisis in 2006, there were many challenges with the hotel association board and we had to convince him to continue on as president because of the contribution that he made.

“I used to tell him he was the best politician who was not in politics but he was very good at maintaining relationships.

“His contribution to tourism was that he was able to communicate with the government about matters to do with the tourism industry.

Olivia Mavoa

Trustee and vice chair of Fiji Excellence in Tourism Awards Olivia Mavoa who is also Denarau Villas Body Corporate Representative said Mr Seeto was a professional.

“We’ve been associated with him for a long time, not only as the chairman of FHTA but also for the tourism awards and other forums,” Ms Mavoa said.

“I think for me personally he was always a can-do person in the sense that he was very professional and he was always a person you could go to and rely on when things got a bit tough and he was always there to discuss things.

“I know that he has been the chairman for the FHTA for a long time and they will really be missing his leadership and it will be a great loss to the industry.

“He was always someone you could rely on to give you guidance and experience.

“He could open the doors and that kind of leadership is very vital and with that kind of background and experience he would always know how to guide us through all of those things.

“It’s such a huge loss – I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like for the family and for the country as a whole and it’s a big shock.”

Nesbitt Hazelman

Fiji Commerce and Employers Federation chief executive officer Nesbitt Hazelman, who is currently in New York, posted on social media saying: “Absolutely shattered here in New York, a friend and mentor, Dixon Seeto, where do I start. This is a great loss.

“I was planning on visiting you in Brisbane next week. .but Almighty God’s plans are higher than ours. May you rest in eternal peace in God’s love.

“I will miss our regular chats, brotherly advice and your sense of humour.

“Deepest condolences our thoughts are with you dear Jenny and Seeto family.

“We will miss his pragmatic contribution.”

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