Letters to the Editor | Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Listen to this article:

Taylor Swift performs at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on February 16 in Australia. Picture: NEWS.COM.AU

Taylor Swift show

If you can imagine all of Suva’s population in one huge stadium, it’ll give you an idea of what the Taylor Swift concerts were like at the Melbourne Cricket Ground where there were just under a hundred thousand fans at every show. For three nights Taylor Swift did sold-out concerts that mesmerised Melbourne’s teeny bopper brigade. Okay, our granddaughter is a huge fan and she knows the words to nearly all of Swift’s songs. But here’s the kicker. While her shows were sold out there were nearly 40,000 fans outside the stadium each night who were happy to just sit and sing along to her songs. Such is the attraction of this iconic performer that people from all over Australia came to catch her glittering performance of over 40 songs she did at each show. Not many international stars have the pulling power like Taylor Swift. What’s her attraction? Her songs tell vivid stories and create magical sequinned characters that her adoring fans absolutely love. And she’s a highly gifted wordsmith where the lyric lines just fit together and make her fans feel like she wrote it exclusively for them. Yes, and she has a wonderful singing voice. She’s one of those unique performers who’s just the full package with a genuineness and honesty that is mesmerisingly attractive. Have I become a “Swifty?” Not quite yet. But if our granddaughter has anything to do with it, who knows! COLIN DEOKI , Australia

Naming ministers

FLP leader Mahendra Chaudhry is right to “Call for PM to name ministers” who he said were under investigation for “probably allegations of abuse of office” (FT 20/2). He also said the ministers in question should have been suspended while under investigation and not continue to enjoy the perks and privileges of their ministerial position. One of the main criticisms of the FijiFirst government was that it did not lend itself to public scrutiny, transparency and democratic accountability. The Rabuka Coalition Government had pledged to give the people the good governance that was conspicuously absent during the long reign in power of the Bainimarama administration. We want that delivered as promised. Rajend Naidu Sydney, Australia

SODELPA over-reacting

The Tui Macuata and retired RFMF Lieutenant Colonel Ratu Wiliame Katonivere has performed his Presidential duties with great success, diplomacy and humour. I am optimistic PM Rabuka will accord the President another term of three years despite the push and shove from the SODELPA camp. Through the grapevine, it is believed Ro Teimumu Kepa was never guaranteed a term at Fiji’s White Government House atop the hill in the Capital City after she lost the 2022 election. Bad discipline is another cause for concern among the SODELPA circus. Tukai Lagonilakeba, Nadi

Issue of breaches

A prominent employer has been fined $5000 for major occupational health and safety breaches (FT 20/02). As usual and for reasons unspecified, this company has not been revealed to the public. The Consumer Council of Fiji and the FCCC have already cultivated a culture of shielding unscrupulous business owners and apparently, the Ministry of Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations is also emulating this practice. I suggest that if you are not going to rightfully expose them, you might as well not notify the general populace of such amoral practices at all. Freaking ridiculous indeed! Nishant Singh, Lautoka

Road hump application

With the many unmarked and illegal road humps posing a grave danger along the Natewa Bay Road on Vanua Levu, we have applicants like Vaga Gardens in Savusavu that is still awaiting a positive response despite applying for legal speed retarding road humps over the past 10 years. Vaga Gardens is a bar and grill restaurant business located along the Hibiscus highway and over the past decade Vaga has lost many a pet and, on several occasions, almost lost the lives of its patrons through near misses from careless drivers both in broad daylight and at night. Can the authorities in charge look into Vaga’s genuine request before someone really does pass away from a fatal accident! Noleen Billings, Savusavu

Power sharing

I think none of the political parties which are already in parliament (both sides) should be provided an opportunity to participate in the upcoming municipal elections. In that way, the other registered political parties and independent candidates will have an opportunity to be part of the local government and as I see it, form the fourth leg of the national government. Would that arrangement make it more stable? The previous government was regularly accused of not wanting to share power. As we have been regularly reminded, this government is different. So, why not create an opportunity to share power? Mohammed Imraz Janif Natabua, Lautoka

Anticipatory actions

The proposal to develop a pilot project on Anticipatory Actions for Tropical Cyclones (FT 20/02), just shows how far we have come in disaster risk reductions management and the development therein of appropriate proactive mitigation measures. It is all about trying to reduce the unknowns and coping with what we know, based on empirical evidence and historical data. But nature by its very nature, will always remain unpredictable and will inevitably be one or more steps ahead of whatever we come up with. Moreso, in these days of geo-engineering, cloud seeding, chem-traills and all that! Edward Blakelock, Admiral Circle, Pacific Harbour 

Investigation dockets

The discovery of torn police dockets in Nadi raises a lot of questions which needs to be addressed. Is the docket inspection by relevant supervisors conducted? Is the docket register updated with movement of dockets? If not, then this will be the end result. Our officers will not be driven by ethics and passion but by outside forces. End of story. Pita Soroaqali, Rakiraki

Strategic visit

I wonder if an effective strategy has been implemented and adopted by the Great Council of Chiefs for the benefit of the iTaukei after their “strategic visit” to China last year. AREKI DAWAI, Suva

The glitch

The mystery of the infamous ‘glitch’ continues. I had assumed that in the age of advanced technology, resolving a simple glitch would not take an eternity. Yet, here we are, awaiting answers as the clock ticks away and costs pile up. I wonder if the ‘glitch investigation’ is encountering its own glitch in being resolved. What a glitchy situation! SANJEET PRASAD Mani Rd, Bulileka, Labasa

Traffic congestion

This issue has been “haunting” our roads for at least 30 years and yet, not a definitive solution has been found. Our urban area roads kept on widening, but to no avail. In my opinion, it would be a “sudden relief”, if all vehicles registered over 15 years old are taken off the road. Besides, importation of vehicles is to be “freezed” for six months, to start with. And above all, why not seek “traffic congestion models” from countries such as Singapore. A nation with a land mass 1.6 times greater than Taveuni, with 6 million urban population and 8300 people per km2. It is really a “benchmark” for our long overdue traffic problem. Samu Silatolu, Nakasi

Drua, Storm foster bonds

It’s pleasing to read about the growing bond between rugby league giants Melbourne Storm and Swire Shipping Fijian Drua. The Storm are in full gear as the boys prepare for the mouthwatering battle against the Newcastle Knights. The side has been utilising the Fijian Drua facilities in the Jet Set Town. Thanks to CEO Mark Evans, the relationship and deep connection between the Drua and Storm have been fostered. Indeed, this enduring bond solidifies the collaborative spirit between the Storm and Drua! Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam Nadawa, Nasinu

Ovalau and Kadavu mortuary service

History always has a way to repeat itself. The plight of the people of both Ovalau and Kadavu with the dilapidated states of their mortuaries is noted with much grief and sadness. Their predicament is one of immense sadness and should not be happening in this modern day and age. We are no longer in the colonial era. The dead deserve far better. In the interim period while waiting for finances to be sorted out by the Ministry of Health, most respectfully, I offer a short term relief. Two donors need to step forward with 2 x 20 feet properly-working refrigerated ship containers. If EFL cannot guarantee full time 24/7 x 365 electricity, I appeal to two generous donors for two reliable generators. Someone must provide the fuel supply needed. Once done, can our very own specialists from the RFMF be approached to fully refurbish and fabricate both containers, to required standards and used as morgues? I offer a short term solution from Jetset Nadi as a caring retiree, as my little contribution. (It will be uncaring “to look the other way” when Ovalau and Kadavu need immediate morgue solutions). Additionally, I fully propose for the mortuaries to be 100 percent solar powered for obvious reasons best known to all concerned. The 100 percent no-fail reliability of power supply must be guaranteed in the best interests of all the dearly departed. This is the time for generous NGOs to step forward too. There are some very generous donor countries who will willingly help our maritime destinations. Ronnie Chang Martintar, Nadi

Coaching crossroads!

Thank you, Rodney Duthie, for sharing an insight into the future of the coach for the Fiji Water Flying Fijians. Indeed, Rodney, in the dynamic world of rugby, where tradition meets innovation, one of the hottest debates reverberating through the rugby fraternity centres around the appointment of the head coach for the Flying Fijians, and the question at the heart of the matter is whether to continue with the trend of selecting expatriate coaches or to invest in local talent. At the 1987, 2007 and 2023 RWC 15s, locals Josateki Savou, Ilivasi Tabua and Simon Raiwalui took the Flying Fijians into the quarters. Under these locals, our boys left an indelible mark in the tournament. In 2007, the boys lost 20-37 to the Springboks who won the Webb Ellis Cup. At one stage, both teams were locked 20-all. Last year, Fiji lost 24-30 under controversial circumstances to England’s Roses which went on to lose 15-16 against the champions (South Africa). I believe the battle for the top post is between former Drua coach Senirusi Seruvakula and current Drua coach Mick Byrne. To me, both are exceptional coaches, having made an impact with the Drua. Both have a wealth of knowledge, skills and experience and are assets. Both coaches can bridge the gap between traditional Fijian flair and modern rugby methodologies. However, the debate over whether to appoint a local coach, or an expatriate coach remains an interesting one. It is for rugby experts to come and discuss around the talanoa table. Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam Nadawa, Nasinu

    [post_type] => post
    [post_status] => publish
    [orderby] => date
    [order] => DESC
    [update_post_term_cache] => 
    [update_post_meta_cache] => 
    [cache_results] => 
    [category__in] => 1
    [posts_per_page] => 4
    [offset] => 0
    [no_found_rows] => 1
    [date_query] => Array
            [0] => Array
                    [after] => Array
                            [year] => 2024
                            [month] => 01
                            [day] => 17

                    [inclusive] => 1