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Kelera Tuiwainikai Recalls Shaking Hands With Prince Charles In 1970

The retired senior nursing sister recalled she was burning with excitement when Prince Charles greeted her the Fijian way, “Bula, how are you?”.
09 Oct 2020 14:25
Kelera Tuiwainikai Recalls Shaking Hands With Prince Charles In 1970
Kelera Vukicanagauna Tuiwainikai holding a frame of her shaking hands with Prince Charles in Lautoka on October 10 1970 while at home in Nakorowiri in Labasa on October 6,2020. Photo: Laisa Lui

Anticipation and excitement filled the air as she awaited the arrival of the Prince of Wales, Prince Charles at Lautoka’s Churchill Park in 1970.

Kelera Vukicanagauna Tuiwainikai, 78, recalls the moment she shook hands with Prince Charles.

Her late husband was the then Deputy Mayor for Lautoka.

“The town council members and their spouses were invited to meet briefly with the Prince as he was on his way to the airport, returning from Suva after the independence celebration,” Ms Tuiwainikai said.

“It was a warm day, thousands of people had gathered to get a glimpse of the Prince of Wales.

“Every year as Fiji Day nears, I am enthused because it is the day, I shook hands with Prince Charles. This 50th anniversary of Fiji’s independence is also 50 years of my shaking hands with the prince.

“I was excited and at the same time nervous because it was the first time for me to stand in front of a crowd.”

The retired senior nursing sister recalled she was burning with excitement when Prince Charles greeted her the Fijian way, “Bula, how are you?”.

I humbly responded with utmost respect, “I am fine thank you, Sir”.

Prince Charles then proceeded to the airport after meeting council members.

The mother of five children, with 15 grandchildren and five great grandchildren had her home decorated with Fijian flags, blue materials and was wearing her Fiji t-shirt as she looks forward into the 50th Anniversary

Edited by Selita Bolanavanua

Feedback:  laisa.kabulevu@fijisun.com.fj

 

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