From the Editor-in-Chief’s desk: Your September 18 briefing
17 September, 2021, 11:12 pm
Bula vinaka everyone
It’s the end of another work-week and as we count down the hours to the weekend, we hope you are well wherever you are and staying safe.
Remember you can get into the draw to win cash prizes with The Fiji Times. All you have to do is to cut out a masthead of The Fiji Times, write your name, address and phone contact, and place this in a bin provided around the country at shops that sell the newspaper. It’s easy and you have to be in it to win! Check Page 19 for details.
Here are some reports that made headlines in The Fiji Times’ edition for Saturday, September 18.
- PEOPLE’S Alliance party leader Sitiveni Rabuka has challenged Attorney-General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum to invite an independent multilateral agency to conduct a household income and expenditure survey and publish the results. He joins economists and politicians who have criticised the sacking of Fiji Bureau of Statistics CEO Kemueli Naiqama after he released demographic data in the 2019-2020 Household Income and Expenditure Survey.
- THE internationally renowned expert on poverty and social justice who assisted in producing the final report of the 2019-2020 Household Income and Expenditure Survey says the survey was carried out to international statistical standards and produced “unbiased results”.
- PEOPLE’S Alliance Party leader Sitiveni Rabuka has thrown an open challenge to Attorney General Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum to invite an independent multilateral agency to conduct a household income and expenditure survey and publish the results.
- THE 2019-2020 Household Income and Expenditure Survey findings are “disturbing, shocking and confirms the fact that the ‘Bainimarama Boom’ was a lie”, says People’s Alliance Party leader Sitiveni Rabuka.
- ATTACKING the Fiji Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday and then dismissing its CEO the next day is “a serious blow” to Government’s claim of Fiji being a democratic and inclusive State.
- SENIOR civil servants must fight back against being bullied and arbitrary dismissals without due process being followed, says Labour Leader Mahendra Chaudhry.
- WE are living in a time where you can be deported, arrested or sacked just because someone in Government does not like you, says National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad.
- YEAR 12 and 13 students will most likely sit external examinations early next year, says Education Ministry permanent secretary Dr Anjeela Jokhan.
- SCHOOLS will be audited over the next few months in a bid to identify possible COVID-19-related risks and where possible structural changes will be made to improve ventilation.
- THE Education Ministry is still looking at several options on how Year 1 to Year 11 students will progress to the next grade in 2022.
- FULLY vaccinated tourists from “green list” countries will be allowed to travel throughout Fiji provided they register a negative COVID-19 test result after spending five days in Fiji.
- EMPLOYEES who are not fully vaccinated will not be able to enter their workplaces after October 4, says Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama.
- PRIME Minister Voreqe Bainimarama says Government will publish vaccination rates of all areas along major motorways and called on Fijians to “avoid areas with low vaccination coverage”.
- CHILDREN aged 15 to 17 years will receive the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine while 12 to 14-year-olds will get the Pfizer jab, says Health Ministry permanent secretary Dr James Fong.
- Dr Fong says he can assure all parents and guardians in Fiji the (COVID-19) vaccines are safe and have completed all necessary clinical trials for safety and efficacy for children aged 15 and 17.
- FOUR more Fijians succumbed to COVID-19 during the period July 8 to July 16, bringing the total number of virus deaths in the country to 544.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
It’s the weekend and there are seven pages of letters to the editor. Feel the pulse of the nation, understand what people are talking about, and read different opinions on issues out there in the public domain. Pages 8,9,20,21,22,23 and 24.
In this popular section, read about: RENOWNED American author Tia Walker once said ‘To care for those who once cared for us is one of the highest honours’. Her words would best describe Lote Raboila’s journey. He gave up a promising diplomatic career, including rubbing shoulders with international leaders, to return home to care for his elderly, bedridden mother.
There are some quality articles for your weekend reading pleasure in this section. It is a very popular section of the newspaper every Saturday.
PAGE 12 – Shooting the messenger
By WADAN NARSEY
IN my The Fiji Times article last week, I commended the Fiji Bureau of Statistics for convincing the Government to publish the Household Income and Expenditure Report. I commended the Bainimarama Government for releasing the poverty facts to the public, regardless of their political sensitivity.
PAGE 27 – To include, or not include –
By JIOJI KOTOBALAVU
THE Government has summarily dismissed Kemueli Naiqama from his position as Government Statistician and head of the Fiji Bureau of Statistics. We are informed that Mr Naiqama had breached the law on statistical surveys and consequently, the terms of his contract of service, by allowing the 2019-2020 Household Income and Expenditure Survey to include “unverified data” on household poverty levels in Fiji based on ethnicity and religion.
PAGE 28 – Baber for top 7s job
By SATISH NARAIN
AS the sparkle from the gold win in Tokyo slowly diminishes, there are more pressing issues on hand as rugby and life moves on in this fast and ever changing world. Do you know that the World Sevens Series is underway in Canada this weekend? Don’t worry, Fijian 7s is not in North America.
PAGE 29 – Speaking Truth to Power
By Dr TUI RAKUITA and SEVANAIA
BECAUSE of time and space limitations, we are going to advance a few well-grounded assumptions in this article. The first is that our Attorney-General and Minister of Economy does not know everything there is to know under the Sun.
PAGE 30 – The Fawlty Towers government?
By RICHARD NAIDU
IN my household the 1970s BBC comedy Fawlty Towers is on regular repeat for family entertainment. Only two years ago it was authoritatively ranked as the greatest British sitcom ever. Starring the six-foot-five manic comedian John Cleese, it depicts life in a chaotic English seaside hotel. Its owner, Basil Fawlty is a man who thinks he is always right.
PAGES 32-33 – FT Anniversary – Heir apparent cuts cane
By ANA MADIGIBULI
NOT often do Fijians see an heir apparent cut cane in a sugarcane field in Fiji and if it did happen it would be a sight to behold. Lucky for a few Labasa folks, this was something they witnessed on a gloomy Tuesday back in October 13, 1970.
PAGE 34 – Hindsight is 20/20
By DR BASHARAT MUNSHI
IN medicine, there is a hypothetical instrument known as the retrospectoscope. Actually, it is a colloquialism for looking at a situation after the fact it has happened when almost anyone can be deemed an expert as it is easy to predict an outcome because the outcome has already happened. This instrument is certainly not unique to medicine.
PAGE 35 – The Serevi moment
By RAJNESH LINGAM
THE year 2000 marked the beginning of a new millennium. It also left rugby fans with tons of memories from the sevens field. The rivalry between Fiji and New Zealand, which has sparked since Hong Kong, continued on the International Rugby Board Sevens circuit which took a new dimension in 1999 with ten tournaments introduced to further promote sevens.
PAGE 36- Cyber Mercenaries and Cyberwars
By ILAITIA B. TUISAWAU
EARLIER this week three American former NSA and US military cybersecurity experts were indicted for violations of US laws involving computer fraud and improper exporting of technology. They agreed to a deferred prosecution agreement in which they would pay a fine over three years of a total of $US1.68 million (F$3.50m), support FBI and Justice Department investigations, sever ties to any United Arab Emirates (UAE) intelligence and law enforcement agencies, immediately relinquish their security clearances from the US and any foreign entity and be under a lifetime ban on future security clearances from the US.
PAGE 37 – A Sports Tragedy
By AJAY BHAI AMRIT
BULA readers! I pray your Saturday is going well. This week I received a message from a dear old friend of mine called Joey, who lives in Texas and was connected very closely to a fascinating, fast living and colorful, super star boxer called Tommy Morrison. Tommy was born in January 1969 in Arkansas and was special from the time he could walk.
We have pages of entertainment news for your reading pleasure over the weekend. Check it out!
This section is much more than just about vehicles… check it out!
The big one on the back page is about: THE Jamaica national 7s team will be the surprise package at this weekends HSBC Vancouver 7s as they have one of the best in the game of sevens helping them in their preparations. Former Fiji 7s captain Waisale Serevi has been helping the Jamaica men’s team as they prepare to make their debut in the World Rugby Sevens Series.
MORE TO READ INSIDE
There’s more to read inside, but you’ll have to get a copy to know what we are talking about. Happy reading!