Editorial

Editorial: Former MP, Rabi Council of Leaders Executive Director, David Christopher Dies At 74

Fiji’s former Member of Parliament and executive director and administrator of the Rabi Council of Leaders (RCL) was called to rest on Saturday. David Christopher, 74, passed away peacefully at his niece’s residence in Suva. Known as the gentle giant, Mr Christopher of Banaban and Kiribati origin, was an MP under the Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua (SDL) government in the early 2000s.
02 Mar 2022 05:30
Editorial: Former MP, Rabi Council of Leaders Executive Director, David Christopher Dies At 74
Former MP, Rabi Council of Leaders executive director, David Christopher.

Fiji’s former Member of Parliament and executive director and administrator of the Rabi Council of Leaders (RCL) was called to rest on Saturday.

David Christopher, 74, passed away peacefully at his niece’s residence in Suva.

Known as the gentle giant, Mr Christopher of Banaban and Kiribati origin, was an MP under the Soqosoqo Duavata ni Lewenivanua (SDL) government in the early 2000s.

 

This would be the beginning of his political career.

Prior to this, he worked many years at the Fiji Sugar Corporation in Tavua then moved on to become instrumental in the Rabi Holdings Limited, an investment arm of the Rabi Council of Leaders.

In his political career, Mr Christopher was the MP of the SDL under Laisenia Qarase’s leadership.

 

He also became an MP for the Kiribati government representing the Banaban/Rabi people.

Following the dissolution of SDL, he once again moved to the Rabi Council of Leaders where he held the position of Executive Director and was again MP in the Kiribati government.

Jacob Karutake was the chair of the RCL for many years.

 

He worked with the late Mr Christopher and described him as an educated, dedicated, disciplined and hardworking individual.

He was one of the Banabans who was well versed with the history of the RCL, Banaba Island and its operation, the Banaban Settlement Act (BSA) (Fiji), Chapter 9 of the Kiribati Constitution – Banaba and Banabans, Mr Karutake said.

 

“He provided sound and timely policy advice to the RCL on matters in regards to the RCL operation both on Rabi and Banaba.

“The RCL during our time relied a lot on his advice to make decisions.

“He was a consistent and punctual worker who always set the pace for other employees of the RCL to follow.

 

“He stuck to the budget and was very strict with the community. When he says no – it meant no.

“If we look at the bigger picture, he was protecting our finance to ensure that there was no overspending.

“These were but some of his strengths which enabled us to run the RCL without any debts and operate within our means.”

 

Mr Karutake added that the Banaban community had lost a key figure in their plight for justice.

“He always stuck to his principles. He will be sadly missed by the Banaban community.”

Mr Christopher attended Niusawa Primary School, Queen Victoria School, Lelean Memorial School and then the University of the South Pacific before entering the workforce.

 

He has three children, Cindy (deceased), Belinda and Keith living in New Zealand and Kiribati respectively.

He has seven grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

Details of funeral arrangements will be confirmed once his daughter, Belinda, makes logistical arrangements for her travel to Fiji.

 

Feedback: ranobab@fijisun.com.fj



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