Letters to the Editor | Monday, February 5, 2024

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Acting Prime Minister Manoa Kamikamica after lighting the Grand Pacifi c Hotel to mark World Cancer Day yesterday. Picture: JONA KONATACI

World Cancer Day

WORLD Cancer Day is a global healthcare event for the awareness of cancer, which has been commemorated on February 4th for the past 23 years with the aim of spreading awareness and educating people about its detection, treatment, and prevention. This week some institutes and NGOs will hold workshops and talanoa sessions. This year the World Cancer Day theme is “Close the Care Gap,” which is a continuation of the 2022 theme and will last until 2024 with specified objectives for each year. It was expected that there would be more exposure and engagement in a multi-year campaign, as well as more opportunities to raise global awareness and have an impact. Low and middle-income nations face a unique challenge in addressing the cancer risk caused by several chronic illnesses. In addition, these nations had shown poor cancer prognosis due to a lack of education, delayed diagnosis, and low access to affordable treatment. In developing countries, too, the lack of cancer awareness leads to delay in diagnosis. A study reported in 2020 was conducted in four major medial universities where the majority of cancer patients seek treatment for the first time only when they are in their advanced stages. The literacy rate and low income greatly influence cancer awareness. In the Pacific the literacy levels were more aware of cancer than others, but lack resources. To conclude, general awareness of cancer screening, prevention, and treatment is low among the global populations, especially in low and middle-income with poor literacy rates leading to an increase in cancer prevalence, and there is an urgent need to fill the lacunae with proper education. World Cancer Day brings attention to how important it is to prevent cancer, find it early, and treat it. NEELZ SINGH
Nelson, New Zealand

Consistent enforcement

I BELIEVE by taking consistent stern action against the offenders, you can greatly reduce the illegal practice of drinking liquor in a public place. We know that an order prohibiting liquor consumption in public places has been in existence for a long time now, but sadly despite the presence of such a good piece of legislation drinking in public places carries on unabated because police are taking no action in the matter. Public place in this context refers to roads, parks, walkways etcetera or all places where public congregation and movement is a regular occurrence. For good reasons, the order was established in the first place, but unfortunately police inefficiency makes the order useless. What should be a place for the children and elderly to relax has become a no-go zone because of the presence of drunkards and disorderliness. Frankly speaking, policing has sunken so badly whereby hooliganism thrives. No one would dare commit any mischief if the wardens were forthright in their policing task. I think it would be justified if the municipality concerned hired a full-time Town Ranger to oversee and protect the council properties from misuse and vandalism. Prevention is better than cure. Let’s be more responsible and attentive to the maintenance of law and order. SURESH CHAND Nadi

Free publicity for Modi

I WAS in Jaipur, India last week which coincided with the visit by French President Macron. The whole city was plastered with banners and posters of PM Modi and the French President embracing each other with “India-France Friendship” on it. When I say banners, I do not mean one or two banners but thousands of them all over the city. You could not miss it. They were huge, perhaps 20 metres by 10 metres each. I was in New Delhi a few days ago and went to the Gandhi Smriti, which is a museum dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi where he was assassinated in 1948. The first thing I noticed when I entered the museum was a picture of PM Modi with the Mahatma at the entrance! There were many pictures of PM Modi spinning the spindle (the charka) which was a hallmark of the Mahatma, in all the cities I visited. My point is so much free publicity of PM Modi using taxpayers’ money in an election year. At least my driver and guides said a few things about it quietly and were concerned about the use of public money for such blatant personal political gain. People are just too scared to publicly make their feelings known. The place felt like a Soviet-era propaganda machine. JAN NISSAR Sydney, NSW, Australia

City infrastructure

LAUTOKA City Council just finished the night market, but your old market, bus station and parks are in a pathetic condition. Look at Marine Drive, all seats are broken, water drinking fountain broken, lights don’t work, overgrown grass, garden overgrown and the list goes on. Why do projects when the existing assets are not looked after. Has any of the four special administrators been to the market at 7am to see how much rubbish is out there? I’m sure none because all they wanted was power. You said you will change things so change it, we the people want a cleaner Lautoka not another project only. ASHMEET KUMAR Lautoka

Mary Wallis

DID the local name Merewalesi originate from the “Mary Wallis” that was depicted in Mary Wallis’ Journey of the Pacific articles in the recent The Sunday Times? That seems quite plausible and logical to me. EDWARD BLAKELOCK Admiral Circle, Pacific Harbour

Drug suspect

IT was reported in the media that a sports executive from West was taken in for questioning in relation to the biggest drug bust in Nadi. The last sports executive was a prominent Lautoka soccer sponsor and a vice president of Fiji Football Association. It will be interesting to find out who this sports executive is and by any chance is he associated with football or Lautoka soccer? GEOFFREY CHAND LAUTOKA

Brumbies edge

Drua WHILE the ACT Brumbies side edged out the Swire Shipping Fijian Drua in a high-scoring game 43-40, the Drua dazzled with a spectacular long-range try against the Brumbies that had it all. Hats off to the boys for a fine performance that showed that a lot of work was put on fine tuning their show come the 2024 Super Rugby Pacific and the first battle against the Auckland Blues in their fortress. The Drua showed glimpses of individual brilliance that would be a threat to teams in the competition. Head coach Mick Byrne, his coaching team and the strength and conditioning coaches deserve applauds for the work done on player fitness and endurance, although the side needs to play 80-minute rugby and protect their try-line. The Drua gave away a comfortable lead at one stage of the game to let the Brumbies sneak back in and steal a come-from-behind win. It was agonising to watch the boys surrender the 28-7 first half lead. Work must start on defence and reducing errors that lead to the opposition crossing our try-line. Hoping for the Drua to beat the Rebels in our second warm-up match. RAJNESH ISHWAR LINGAM Balgovind Rd, Nadawa, Nasinu

Local expats

DONALD Singh and Selwa Nandan express legitimate grievance about Fijians who have settled abroad being given lucrative jobs in Fiji (ST 4/2 ). They feel it’s not fair to Fijians who stayed back despite the hardship and adversity brought by the coups in the country. After the 2006 coup I wrote in to come as a volunteer to help with the training of social welfare officers. I got no reply from the State authorities. A first cousin of mine who was a FSM gold medallist and topped her medical class in the US and had served in the hospitals in Suva and Ba also wrote to volunteer. She also got no response. All local expatriates are not opportunists. RAJEND NAIDU Sydney, NSW, Australia

Star Roy

ROY the “Joy” Krishna at 36 years continues to razzle and dazzle in the Indian Super League. His ability to penetrate through the defence is a wonder to watch. However, what amazed many is his two latest goals last week which were scored through scintillating headers and oh boy it was a beauty to watch and behold. Indian fans are going crazy with what the Fijian is producing. Another story about Roy’s participation in the Indian league is when he joins a new club, he elevates it to the next level. Odisha was a struggling club, but is now second in the league. Roy continues to remain the joy and we wish him every success in 2024 and beyond. SHALWYN PRASAD Mukta Ben Place, Nabua

Reality of the matter

I WOULD like to address Rajend Naidu’s question from yesterday’s The Sunday Times LTE section: “So on whose order did the JSC circumvent the law?” Mr. Naidu sir, the reality of the matter is that you, the general public and I are well aware of whose orders the country was following during the previous government. Sometimes you don’t have to name a name to know a name. You just know it! SANJEET PRASAD Mani Rd, Bulileka, Labsa

Shadow effect

NO, Biman. The surviving FFP saplings don’t need to move away from their leader’s shadow. That dreaded shadow simply vanished when the curtains fell and the spotlights turned away after the 2022 national election. They can look up now and embrace the light. SAMU RAILOA Nadi

Bat name

THANK you Dr Paul Geraghty and Aren Nunnink. I am gaining valuable knowledge from both of you. Next time I see a bat I’ll address it by a name and observe what name it responds to. I will provide updates to both of you through this column. SANJEET PRASAD Mani Rd, Bulileka, Labasa

The end

LTE (04/02) from the Aussie writer was surely picked up from Khlas Khabre. MOHAMMED IMRAZ JANIF Natabua, Lautoka

Elite athletes

THE only way to be a powerhouse in athletics — like previously — is to select potential elite athletes and pay them to be fulltime athletes. In addition to prepare them for life after athletics is to have an education program for them. ASISH VINAY PRASAD Park Rd, Raiwasa

Highly paid

HOW much is the new CEO of FRCA getting that he left New Zealand to come to Fiji? I know the CEO of Lautoka City Council, who was in overseas but came to Fiji to, is the most highly paid municipal CEO. What happened? Don’t we have any person in Fiji to fill that position? Why do we need a overseas person to fill the positions in Fiji. GEOFFREY CHAND Lautoka

Sardin issue

MORE on the Brunswick Sardines issue. I saw some “select chunk” Brunswick sardines variety and purchased them because the tins had the old color on them. They tasted just like old times. Definitely some issues with new product with the lighter shade of gold. Needs investigating. VIJAY P. MADHAVAN Suva

Talanoa session

THE Talanoa session organised by Lautoka City Council was a waste of time. I went to give my views, but didn’t get a chance as all I heard about was swimming pool, unpaid city rates and projects. Please organise properly and allow more time for the public ask questions. ASHMEET KUMAR Lautoka

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