Girmit
Girmit

Recognising and upholding the values of our ancestors is a path to progress for Fiji – Professor Prasad

Recognising and upholding the values of our ancestors is a path to progress for Fiji – Professor Prasad

By Mosese Raqio
Saturday 11/05/2024
Source : Fiji Government

The Coalition Government strongly believes that recognizing and upholding the values and blessings of our ancestors is a path to progress towards a new vision for our beloved nation.

This was highlighted by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Professor Biman Prasad while officiating at the 145th Girmit commemoration at the Girmit Multicultural Centre in Lautoka this morning.

Professor Prasad says the theme “Journey of Girmit Descendants in Building a New Fiji” goes hand in hand with the Coalition Government’s national objective of promoting social cohesion and recognizing the diverse contribution of ethnic communities in the progress and prosperity of Fiji.

He says it was also highly symbolic for him to launch the start of an event in a place known as Sugar City because he came from the rice fields of Muanidevo in Dreketi, Vanua Levu.

He adds more than 60,000 indentured labourers from India were shipped across to Fiji between May 14 1879, and 11th November 1916, in treacherous conditions by the British Colonial Masters as the vast British Empire ruled both India and Fiji amongst many, many other nations.

Professor Prasad says as descendants of the Girmitiya, they have and can trace their ancestry, thanks to the availability of the Immigrant pass.

He says whether members of the Indo-Fijian diaspora are here or settled abroad, it is our patriotic duty to our motherland, the land of our birth to ensure that our beloved nation is a beacon of hope and land of opportunity.

He further says the Coalition government under the leadership of Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka has recognised this invaluable contribution of the Girmitiya and their descendants by declaring Girmit Day as a public holiday.

The Deputy PM says this is not celebrating indenture or slavery, as a political leader quite preposterously claimed a few days ago, but it is a celebration of our forefathers’ determination to triumph over slavery or servitude and make Fiji their new home which they succeeded because of their unshakable principles of dignity, equality, justice and self-respect.

He says that it is a strange twist of fate that apart from marking the 100th anniversary of the arrival of the Girmitiya in 1979, no government in our post-independent history had declared a public holiday to celebrate the life of our forefathers.

Professor Prasad says Fiji is the motherland of the Indo-Fijians or descendants of the Girmitiyas, just as it is for our indigenous people.

He adds both communities have a diaspora overseas, but even those who have migrated cannot abandon their motherland.

FEATURE NEWS
RFNS Puamau slowly takes in water on the reefs in Fulaga
As the Republic of Fiji Navy welcomed RFNS Savenaca along with the crew of RFNS Puamau last night, salvage works in Lau seems impossible as the boat s...
3 hours ago
LATEST NEWS
PC Mannu achieves dream of becoming a Police Officer
Not giving up on your dreams rings true for Police Constable Abishek Mannu as he tried out to become a Police Officer twice, but he never gave up ...
3 hours ago

UniFiji Academics believe there is potential for growth in economic cooperation between Fiji and Indonesia
Three University of Fiji academics from the School of Business and Economics who were engaged as Think Tanks by the Embassy of the Republic of ...
3 hours ago

Department of Immigration to focus on transitioning to digital processes to improve efficiency
The Department of Immigration will focus on how the ITC Services can support the Department, particularly by providing IT support and transitioning ...
3 hours ago

More finance is required to grow TVET programs in Fiji – Pacific Polytech Director
More finance is required to expand technical and vocational education training (TVET) programmes in Fiji and to be able to do more ...
3 hours ago

The drug situation is worse than before, but it is something we can manage - Tikoduadua
The drug situation in the country is worse than before, but it is something we can still manage as a community and as a nation together. This was ...
3 hours ago



fijivillage Straight Talk with Vijay Narayan
Latest Videos

Stay tuned for the latest news on our radio stations

CFL radio frequencies
yb
IN DEPTH
Crisis within FijiFirst relating to the termination of 17 MPs who voted for salary increases
A crisis has erupted within the FijiFirst party relating to the termination of 17 members of parliament who supported the government's motion to ...
1 day ago

Pre-Budget 2024-2025
2023-2024 National Budget Address2023-2024 Budget Supplement2023-2024 Budget ...
3 days ago

Sayed-Khaiyum case on alleged payment of Saneem's taxes without proper approval
It is alleged that between the 30th of June, 2022 and the 12th of July, 2022 in Suva, whilst being employed in the civil service as the Acting Prime ...
5 days ago

TOP