Descendants of Girmitiyas thank the chiefs of Ba for protection

Descendants of Girmitiyas thank the chiefs of Ba for protection

By Marika Rasekaseka
Sunday 12/05/2024

It was an emotional day for the descendants of the Girmitiyas in the Western Division when they presented a tabua (whale's tooth) to thank the Taukei Navo Ratu Meli Saukuru, Tui Nawaka Ratu Joeli Bulu, Taukei Vidilo Ratu Wiliame Bouwalu and the Matanivanu nodra na Turaga na Tui Naviti, Sikeli Mulase.

During the presentation of the tabua, they also thanked the chiefs for their protection for the past 145 years and hope that their generations to come will also be protected and blessed.

The Vasu of Ba also asked the chiefs to forgive those if they said some words and caused hatred within the Vanua of Ba.

While accepting their va vina vinaka, the Matanivanua for the Tui Naviti, Sikeli Mulase repeated a bible verse by saying that what has been done on earth, is known in heaven.

Mulase accepted the tabua and its meaning and said they are thankful for what has been done as it will bring unity amongst all Fijians.

While speaking to fijivillage News, Tui Nawaka Ratu Joeli Bulu said what had been done for the past 145 years is all in the past and both races need to love one another and bring prosperity to our country.

Na Tui Nawaka says the presentation and the theme of this year’s celebrations has a true meaning of unity, a journey of Girmit descendants in building a new Fiji.

Organising Committee member, Shalend Singh says they are lucky to be part of the descendants that have been blessed.

Singh says many of them have gone to greener pastures in the past years, but now are free and blessed after been forgiven by their chiefs and have been called Vasu of the Province of Ba.

A talanoa session was held where the descendants asked the chiefs if they could be protected by their guidance and provided with leases and given a chance to help the sugar industry and the economy of Fiji.

They also requested to be given a piece of land beside the river in the Province of Ba to do their rituals because sometimes they are chased by landowners for putting ashes and doing their final rituals beside the river.

Assistant Minister for Women, Sashi Kiran also asked the chiefs if they could be given a chance to learn the proper iTaukei way of life and to be held in a selected village in the Province of Ba.

In response, the Tui Nawaka said that they have taken the request from the descendants and will raise it in their Provincial Meeting.

He said what has been done by the descendants is the solution of moving forward for the two races to become one.

He said the Province of Ba has accepted the descendants' request and will work with them to bring unity to Fiji.

The celebration will continue today until tomorrow at the Girmit Centre in Lautoka.

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