People | A news vendor’s calling

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Jovesa Sekiqali at his table along the Victoria Arcade footpath. Picture: ELENA VUCUKULA

Jovesa Sekiqali has been selling newspapers along Victoria Parade in Suva for the past two years.

It is a job that requires utmost patience but one he does without regret.

From Monday to Saturday, the Tavuki, Kadavu native ekes out a living by selling bales of The Fiji Times and The Fiji Sun newspapers.

“I decided to sell newspapers because there was not any job available when I needed one,” he said.

“My pay depends on the sales made from these newspapers, sometimes I would get $10 commission.”

Mr Sekiqali attended Ratu Sukuna Memorial School.

He answered God’s calling very young in his life and as soon as he left high school he enrolled himself into the Assemblies of God Bible College in Wainadoi.

After three years of studying the word of God, he graduated and got posted to Yalalevu in Ba where he was a lay preacher for 15 years.

While he sells newspapers to earn an honest living, he believes it is a temporary job he must faithfully do before God sends him on his next mission.

“I’m waiting for the right timing from God for an opportunity to go and preach overseas.”

And while he waits for his next evangelical assignment, he must weather the challenges of his current job.

He said trying to meet his sales target daily was not easy and often depended on external circumstances.

“Most times the papers would sell out if the Fijiana Drua, Fijian Drua or Fiji 7s team wins a game and they make the front page of the paper.

“That’s because Fijians are die hard rugby fans. They are always eager to know the story behind their team’s win and stories on the struggles rugby players go through.”

To make his sales, Mr Sekiqali relocates at 1pm from Victoria Parade and sells newspapers in the afternoon from a table at the Suva Bus Stand where he sells from before retiring for the day.

His shift ends at 6pm.

“Two of my children are working while one is currently studying at the University of the South Pacific.”

Part of his earnings goes to school and everyday expenses.

Mr Sekiqali advises young people to pray to God about their work.

“Your faith will be tested and you have to endure.

“We need to be obedient before we can receive good things.”

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