Government is encouraging all citizens to join in the fun and fiesta as Fiji celebrates its 42nd year of independence on Wednesday, October 10th.
The national celebration, themed ‘Celebrating a United Fiji’ will culminate over two days from 9th and 10th October in the four major divisions of Suva, Lautoka, Labasa and Ovalau.
Permanent Secretary for Information, Sharon Smith-Johns in a government release said there is so much for all Fijians to not only celebrate but to reflect on the achievements of this wonderful country.
“We are a remarkable people with diverse cultures, religions and ethnicity, we have a lot to be proud of and many reasons to celebrate," she said.
Highlights of the celebrations include a friendship march consisting of people from all walks of life including school children, government, military, police and businesses through the cities and towns of Suva, Lautoka, Levuka and Labasa
On Wednesday October 10th, Fiji Day, the main centre Suva will begin its celebrations with a march from the Flea Market to Albert Park, where the Fiji Military Forces will perform an exhibition including a military parade which will be inspected by His Excellency the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau followed by a 21 gun salute signifying the momentous occasion.
A hive of entertainment rings in following the official part of the event with food stalls, ferris wheel and bouncy castles for children. The police jazz band will also be performing as well as meke groups and other entertainment. Major businesses and the private sector and government ministries will be on hand to display their services to the people.
In Levuka, Minister for Primary Industries and Acting Minister for Defence and National Security Joketani Cokanasiga will be accorded a traditional itaukei ceremony of welcome before entertainment kicks in Ovalau style.
Here the festivities will engage the participants in a handicraft competition, branding of Levuka, traditional dances from the different communities, public shows and many more to keep the crowd entertained.
In Lautoka on Tuesday 9th the Minister for Local Government, Urban Development and Housing Colonel Samuela Saumatua will lead this festivities for the western division. He will be joined by Commissioner Western Commander Joeli Cawaki and Special Administrator Praveen Bala.
Similarly on the 9th in the friendly North at Subrail Park chief guest Dr Samuela Bogitini will lead the celebrations. The event will include all age groups with entertainment in the form of meke’s and a cultural item by a Rabi Dance group with the lowering of the flag by the RFMF.
“Fiji Day is about unity and celebration, if you are unable to come along to the main celebrations then get together with friends and family and as our campaign says ‘put up a flag and put down a lovo, invite your neighbours over and make this Fiji Day one to remember, Smith- Johns added.
By Reginald Chandar