Letters to the Editor – Tuesday, July 20, 2021

A reader browses through a copy of The Sunday Times. Picture: ELIKI NUKUTABU

The Sunday Times

I have to assume that you have good reason not to produce a print edition of The Sunday Times.

I am very disappointed.

I always look forward to the special items that appear weekly in The Sunday Times, including the Sunday challenges on the puzzles page.

I find myself deprived of this relaxation.

It is especially hard at this time of restrictions and having to stay home to keep safe.

There is a dangerous assumption now that everyone has a phone in their hand.

It seems to be a fact that many people do possess a mobile.

In recent months it has become clear that even if there is no money to put food on the table, there is at least one mobile in the household on which to call Government for free food.

I had my phone stolen six months ago.

I have not replaced it.

It is an expensive item to purchase and it is costly to run.

So I have no means of getting access to an e-Edition of The Sunday Times, nor have I any wish to do so.

Having paid my subscription for a newspaper that I can hold in my hand, and enjoy the rustle as I turn the pages with expectation, it is disappointing to find it is not available for me.

I very much hope that the print edition will be available again soon.


Mandatory vaccine

A lot of people are complaining about this almost mandatory vaccine stance the Government has taken.

But what I like about it is that they are doing everything they can to push the agenda that they believe in.

Not caring about any criticism, legal repercussions, or political damage.

It’s decisive action.

Suppose we had a government that doubted the vaccines and didn’t make any effort to bring them into the country.

We would be doomed for a very long time.

William Shakespeare had written: “Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt”.

Kiran Khatri, Samabula, Suva

Cane price

I am glad that the minimum guaranteed price of $85 per tonne for sugar cane has been restored in the 2021/2022 budget.

All the pleas and sacrifice from the growers have not been in vain after all.

They will be smiling again now.

However, going forward this ad hoc arrangement is not conducive for long term sustainability and growth of the industry.

Like all other businesses the farmers also need certainty and security and not to be at the mercy of price changes every year.

Then only they will give their best to increase production and yield.

So a longer term solution has to be found if we are really serious about the future of this industry.

It’s all about building trust and confidence.


Saving lives

Is it possible for our local Government to implement complete lockdown of Lautoka for a few weeks?

Maybe others will follow.

We can have hospitals and vaccination sites open, special pass for those related to the sugar industry.

The rest of the non-essential shops such as clothing, footwear, restaurants etc to close –– just a thought!

Because people are reporting to work, shopping, moving in/out of town.

It’s impossible for everyone to stay home like this.

That saves lives not money.


COVID-19 protocols

Because of curfew and other COVID-19 related restrictions that are currently in force, people obviously no longer are able to attend many religious, social and family functions that they would have wanted to.

This means such events are now going on without the presence of too many people.

It is safe to remain within the confines of your own bubble as much as possible.

Please do not forget that you are not alone in this predicament.

Our safety is in adhering to all the safety measures at all times.

At present of paramount is our commitment looking after our health and the health of fellow citizens.

Sooner or later better days will return for us to once again enjoy life normally.

Hence, our duty right now is to support and help the Government’s plan of protecting human lives.

I don’t think normalcy can be restored unless and until we get the pandemic out of way and that I think is only possible if we all work together.

Now if we will have so many people breaking the rules and guidelines that have been set to save our lives, then I believe the whole scenario changes and we get back to square one.

Bringing these people to justice and fining them is one thing but we need to do much more than that so that others don’t commit the same mistake.

Rising positive case numbers and deaths are too worrying to think about.

Some deaths, I think, are a result of lack of proper medical equipment and poor service.

This is also the time for the relevant people to ponder on the future need and requirement of our falling health and medical facilities.

Rest we leave it to God.


Runaway train

I believe with the current strategy, our COVID-19 crisis will become a runaway train.

WISE MUAVONO, Balawa, Lautoka

Curfew for all

Can we please have the 6pm curfew for the rest of Viti Levu too?

We want everyone to enjoy the benefits of this home before dark rule.

KIRAN KHATRI, Samabula, Suva

Woman captain

Would we have managed the pandemic better if a woman was our “captain”? (FT 18/7)

ALLEN LOCKINGTON, Kava Place, Lautoka

Union leaders

If the workers of Fiji keep electing the same old trade union leaders over and over again for decades – most of them for more than three decades, then they should not expect things to change.

Wasn’t it Einstein who said words to that effect?

So stop whining please, it’s up to you to bring about change.

I just realised that by mentioning Fiji’s trade union leaders and Einstein in the same paragraph, I may have committed a serious offence.

JAN NISSAR, NSW, Australia

Make Fiji great again

I think that we do not have to look hard to find evidence of COVID-19’s influence in our Fiji today!

Preventing our morals, sabotaging our educational system, wrecking our social structure, destroying our spiritual and religious lives, weakening our industrial and economic power, demoralising our frontliners, including our disciplined forces.

To “make Fiji great again”, please let us all get vaccinated and pray.

God bless Fiji.

PENI MATEIWAI, Kameli Place Nabua, Suva

Castles in the air

I thought my fellow Sydneysider Altauf Chand’s analysis of the budget was illuminating (FT 19/7).

He seems to suggest the budget might be a case of building castles in the air.

Time will tell.

RAJEND NAIDU, Sydney, Australia

Unemployment assistance

The Government’s recent announcement of the unemployment assistance policy of “no jab, no benefits” has been labelled as unfair.

Can we not look at it from another angle?

Can we not label it as an incentive?

BHARAT MORRIS, Rifle Range, Vatuwaqa, Suva

Positive outcome from Hamilton

The All Blacks beat Fiji 60-13 in their second Test at the FMG Stadium in Hamilton on Saturday night.

The All Blacks, for the second week running, scored nine tries.

They conceded just one five-pointer in an improved performance in relation to their first Test effort.

The ABs had run out 57-23 winners in the first Test in Dunedin but the final score certainly flattered the three-time world 15s champions.

In Hamilton, Sevu Reece scored a hat-trick against his home nation, as the Flying Fijians lost.

Reece touched down in the 14th, 30th and 35th minutes to give the ABs a commanding 29-6 lead by half-time.

They took time to settle, with Fiji starting brightly and scoring first through Ben Volavola’s penalty.

Ian Foster’s side had come into Saturday’s clash under pressure, having been bested at the breakdown in the opener before running over the tiring Fijians.

Fiji’s Peni Ravai scored a scintillating team try from the set-piece.

Fiji enjoyed the wonderful support in Hamilton and our boys showed that with more Tests against Tier one, we will ruffle feathers on the international area.

Even though Fiji lost both Tests, I’m proud of the boys’ effort.

In a short span, they did wonders.

Vinaka vakalevu, Vern Cotter and the team management, for moulding the Flying Fijians!

Thank you boys for giving your best shot against the super powers of rugby!


Compromised Olympics

The revelation that some coaches and players have been found to be COVID-19 positive and others told to isolate is a shame.

I believe it will be unfair on the path of the teams who have done so much to reach Tokyo and having to suffer this fate.

With the games starting this Friday and lots of movement of athletes from the games village to the stadium and contacts with match officials and medical personnel and others, it could be worse.

What if a team or an athlete turns positive before the finals?

The organisers have their work cut out.

I only hope the game is free of any major disruptions and remains as competitive as possible.

PRANIL RAM, Votualevu, Nadi

Proposed sugar price

As a citizen of Fiji, I’m dismayed and shocked to learn of the proposed price increase in our raw brown sugar.

I do not agree nor have any slightest approval.

Given the current financial situation we are in, where there is no employment or business for most Fijians, how does FSC expect ordinary Fijians to pay for the increased amount?

I believe it is the duty of our government leaders to look into this and find a solution.

Say NO to proposed new sugar price Fijians.

JIOJI M CAKACAKA, Tadra, Votualevu, Nadi

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