For My Dad

Proud graduate dedicates her achievement to late father, former Minister for Forests, Osea Naiqamu
27 Jan 2022 12:05
For My Dad
From left: The wife of the late Osea Naiqamu, Ulukalisi Naiqamu (senior), grandson, Isaia Rasila, granddaughter, Ulukalisi Naiqamu, son-in-law, Pita Degei and daughter, Vutaieli Naiqamu at their family home in Natabua, Lautoka on January 26, 2022. Photo: Nicolette Chambers

Painful emotions overshadowed what was supposed to be a joyous graduation day for Vutaieli Naiqamu.

This was because four days earlier, she lost her dad, who died after going through a prolonged illness.

The 26-year-old mother of three, known to many as ‘Vuta’, could not hold back her tears as she returned home after collecting her Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the Fiji National University, Natabua Campus in Lautoka yesterday. Unfortunately, she knew she would not receive a congratulatory hug and kiss from her dad.

Her father, Osea Naiqamu, was the former Minister for Forestry who died on Sunday at their Natabua home. She dedicated her achievements to him.

“Today is an emotional day for me because I just wish my dad was here with me today to witness my achievement and I am indebted to him because of the way he actually stood by me when I had kids; now I have three kids,” she said.

“I never left my dad’s side, I stayed with him, and I pursued my education at the Fiji National University and I just knew that just by looking at him being a Member of Parliament, I knew I had to finish my education; it did not stop me from going towards achieving this Degree.

“I was supposed to apply for the collection of certificates last week, but because of his health I knew he couldn’t go with me to receive my certificates and so I stayed by his side the whole of last week until he passed on.”

She spoke about the three years it took to complete her degree and the many challenges that came along with it; all of which pushed her to succeed.

“Parenting and education is very hard, but I did it,” she said.

Ms Naiqamu is now focused on securing employment soon to continue looking after her family.

“I thank my mum, my husband, my siblings for staying by my side,” she said.


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