Letters to the Editor – Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Sukha Singh, third from right, trained with Sunia Cama, the Fiji heavyweight boxing champ in 1976-77. Picture: SUPPLIED

Ethnic background

For two years I trained with Sunia Cama, the Fiji heavyweight boxing champ in 1976-77.

He never asked me my name or race or where I was from.

He used to call me Punjab.

He did not say kai Punjab, just Punjab.

Here was one guy who just by looking at me knew who I was and I have never felt so proud in my life.

Now Punjab is the place where my grand parents came from.

Incidentally my grandfather Hari Singh could have been the first sergeant of the Royal Fiji Police Force.

Let us all be proud of our ethnic backgrounds.

Sukha Singh, Labasa

Civil servant’s role

I wish to respond to your headline of September 25, 2021 “Reality of the matter”.

Leaving the sarcastic nature of the headline aside, let’s dwell on the reality of the issue.

It is not only a submission of an honest snapshot of poverty situation but a question whether the chief executive officer adhered to his terms of employment and job description.

The CEO is the employee and the government is the employer.

The CEO is required to work and discharge his duties within the ambit of his job description.

If you go beyond or cross the border you contravene the rules of your contract, simple as that.

The issue is whether this is insubordination, meaning breaking of the law as laid out in Section 5 of the Statistics Act.

In this instance, has the CEO of the Fiji Bureau of Statistics done exactly that?

The Cabinet determines the policy and the civil servants carry out its implementation.

The Cabinet is the product of the elected government.

So if you disobey or do not abide or adhere to the government policy, you resign or be replaced.

If that was what happened, then the action taken by the minister in question was to my reading of the situation not extra judicious.

The termination of the CEO’s contract would have been within the law and rightful.

The raising of hue and cry by the opposition is expected as it is their only means of gaining cheap political mileage.

They habitually talk about law and order and good governance but in this instance they support disobedience as it suits their agenda.

Tarun Tikaram, Marine Drive, Vugalei, Lami

Maiden names

A survey by the New York Times in 2015 found out that 30 per cent of American women prefer to keep their maiden names after marriage.

Quebec in 1981 passed a law that women are required to keep their maiden names.

They do not have a choice!

This was enacted after the creation of Quebec Charter of Rights.

Greece has a similar rule since 1983.

This was enacted after a wave of feminist legislation.

France has that rule since 1789.

People cannot legally change their name on the Birth Certificate but can use other surnames for colloquial purposes.

Italy has the same rule since 1975 while Netherlands has always had the rule where women keep their maiden names.

Malaysia, Korea, Spain and Chile have similar rules where women keep their maiden names.

The point of this.

There has been no major report of people voting twice in these countries and no major election decision has been affected due to the above legislation.

Secondly, we talk of women’s right and equality.

The right to choose cannot be deprived to any person based on gender or more importantly based on marital status.

All basic human rights begins with the power bestowed on an individual to have a right to identity first.

Rajendra Prasad, Niudamu Rd, Nakasi

Cheap shot

Another cheap shot was aimed at The Fiji Times.

It’s rather sad that instead of appreciating the good work that The Fiji Times has been doing for the past 152 years, an attack was launched on the people’s newspaper that is loved and admired by thousands of people here and abroad because of its credibility.

I urge those who condemn the good, old and valuable The Fiji Times to please read the content carefully so that you are aware of what it publishes.

I agree with the editor-in-chief that, “The Fiji Times exists to publish all views and to ensure there is balanced coverage of the news and balanced political debate”.

Rajnesh Ishwar Lingam, Nadawa, Nasinu

Termite story

Aren’t we at least fortunate termites do not behave like the “walking dead”?

Mohammed Imraz Janif, Natabua, Lautoka

Media question

MP Selai only talked about The Fiji Times, what’s her opinion about the other newspaper?

Does she even have one?

Allen Lockington, Kava Place, Lautoka

Outside the box

Thinking way outside the box, if democracy is really alive and well in good old Fiji, I hope I live long enough to see our very first woman prime minister —following Samoa; Australia and New Zealand.

How about seeing our very first woman President?

There are several women of considerable knowledgeable, well-educated, pride and distinction, who can “check the box” amicably.

Food for thought.

Ronnie Chang, Martintar, Nadi

Growth, change

“Growth means change” I wonder which growth Simon was referring to? (FT 27/9)

If changing laws was not important, what is?

The question is why discriminate against half our population?

Dan Urai, Lautoka

Our women

Women were not made by the fist to be punched at, or by the feet to be kicked at, nor by the mouth to be gossiped about, sworn or spat at, but, by the heart to love at dearly sister, daughter, niece, aunt, mother and grandmother as well.

Violence is not my culture.

How about you?

I love my mum and my two sisters.

Stand up for the women of the world.

Jadon E Masivesi, Tadra- Votualevu, Nadi

The church

A church (or local church) is a religious organisation or congregation that meets in a particular location.

Many are formally organised, with constitutions and by-laws, maintain offices, are served by clergy or lay leaders, and, in nations where this is permissible, often seek non-profit corporate status.

It is sad to note that some Christian churches won’t open their doors to those who are not vaccinated on October 4 onwards, because of Government imposed laws on COVID-19.

It totally changes the way I look at churches as I thought it’s a sanctuary for sinners like me.

God works in mysterious ways…. John 13:7

Jioji Masivesi Cakacaka, Tadra – Votualevu, Nadi

A special day

The World News Day will be celebrated on Tuesday, September 28, 2021 under the aegis of the Canadian Journalism Foundation and the World Editors Forum.

This is a global campaign to support journalists and their audiences.

In fact this is an attempt to make the world a better place based on facts and verifiable information.

Therefore, the critical importance of credible journalism.

The proliferation of communications technology based on smartphones, smart television, smart newspapers and the introduction of optic fiber cables has reduced the world into a global village.

The flight of news from one corner of the world to the other is mind boggling.

Speed is the name of the game and the journalists have to be on top of that.

They have to be fully armed with the tools of their trade to gather news, verify it, process it and disseminate to their audiences.

Journalists have to be courageous, determined and ready to take risks.

Journalism is a big business and hundreds of media organisations around the world are busy collecting news to feed the hungry audiences.

Therefore, the timing of the news is critically important.

Success and failure is very much dependent on this.

Two great events of our time: COVID-19 and climate change have caught our attention like no other.

Journalists influence communities through the factual and verifiable information.

Communities absorb news from radio, newspapers and television to keep pace with the latest development.

Their safety and survival is very much dependent on the information that they get from these sources.

Therefore, the journalists who have served in the frontline have contributed to making this planet a better place for all.

Journalists all over the world must be commended for the herculean task they are carrying out to keep the world informed.

Vulnerable communities can make informed decisions during the times of natural disasters.

May I wish all journalists and news organisations a very successful World News Day.

Dewan Chand, Donu Place, Namadi Heights, Suva

Issue of news

News comes in various forms and they are written, spoken and visual via newspaper, radio, television and other digital devices.

People have friends and relatives in different parts of the world and news is the regular informant of global occurrences.

Journalism is a big task which requires responsibility, reliability and accuracy.

One cannot depend on hearsay!

What info reaches the general public is very important.

Journalism is a group work which includes informant, researcher, reporter, photographer, editor, printer, publisher and deliverer.

Be it national or international news is the only source which keeps people globally connected and informed.

Thus the collection, revelations and distribution of data and info needs to be factual.

Journalism is a mind wrecking job for which one has to be mentally and emotionally strong.

How to retrieve and clarify information, how to get an appointment, how to conduct an interview all require strategic planning.

People don’t welcome journalists with open arms on all occasions so if one option fails there should be an alternative.

To change reluctance into acceptance depends on approach and deliverance of crew.

News is a form of visa for the world at large.

It is news that takes us places thus it has to be actual, factual and punctual on deliverance.

Congrats to those who keep us informed and carry out their work diligently.

Journalism is a form of revelation be it of an individual, group, community or organisation which requires research before it reaches the eyes and ears of the people at large.

One needs to work their brain before they whack their tongue because news is the only tool people rely on for connectivity of worldly events.

We have media organisations celebrating the anniversary.

May you continue to keep us updated and united with the world through your sources righteously.

Congrats on your success and services. Be it the exposure of negativity or positivity “Let Truth Prevail”.

Everyday is a news day.

Happy World News Day!

Prameet Chand, Donu Place, Namadi Heights, Suva

More Stories