DEPARTMENT OF INFORMATION FIJI NEWS SUMMARY 10/10/14 3:00PM ?

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1.?FIJIAN PRESIDENT PAYS TRIBUTE TO WORKERS POSTED OVERSEAS?- His Excellency the President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau has urged all Fijians to celebrate the sacrifice and commitment?of all our men and women serving overseas.

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2.?OLD CAPITAL COMES TO LIFE AT FIJI DAY CELEBRATION?- More than a thousand students and families in Levuka marched through the old capital to celebrate 44 years of independence today.

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3.?ASSISTANT MINISTER COMMENDS RUGBY BODY?- Government commended the work carried out by the Fiji National Rugby League especially in developing young Fijians who are talented in rugby.

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1?FIJIAN PRESIDENT PAYS TRIBUTE TO WORKERS POSTED OVERSEAS

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His Excellency the President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau has urged all Fijians to celebrate the sacrifice and commitment?of all our men and women serving overseas.

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In his?address to the nation?marking Fiji?s 44 years of independence, the head of state said that our servicemen and women may be far across the seas, but they remain close to us in our hearts and we must pray for them as well as for their families here in Fiji.

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?On this Fiji Day, let us celebrate their sacrifice and commitment, along with that of all our other men and women serving the people of other nations,? Ratu Epeli said.

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?Our peacekeepers and police officers not only on the Golan heights but in Iraq,?Liberia and South Sudan; those Fijians?serving in other armed forces around the world; our civilian volunteers working in schools, hospitals and clinics in our Pacific neighbors; and all those Fijians working in countries further afield.?

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His Excellency added that the families of those Fijians serving outside the country should be proud of their dedication in putting the needs of others before their own.

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?Because that is the essence of Fiji day. A time to put aside our individual concerns and think about our nation and what it means to us all,? Ratu Epeli said.

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?I appeal to you all to be patriotic, to have a true sense of pride about our nation no matter what we do or where we are.?

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His Excellency the President, Ratu Epeli Nailatikau was accorded a 21 gun salute that was followed by a parade by members of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces which was witnessed by more?than a thousand Fijians at Albert Park today.

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2?OLD CAPITAL COMES TO LIFE AT FIJI DAY CELEBRATION

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More than a thousand students and families in Levuka marched through the old capital to celebrate 44 years of independence today.

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As Fijians across the country and the world celebrate Fiji Day this week, the Levuka-celebrated event saw Fijians living there reflect on the changes that have taken place in the country.

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Speaking at the celebrations, the Minister for Youth and Sports Laisenia Tuitubou said Fiji has come a long way since 1970.

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?Since then we as nation have grown together. Along the we have faced many obstacles but we have advanced and developed tremendously strong because of the spirit and determination that all Fijians have within to thrive and flourish,? Minister Tuitubou said.

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?We now have constitution and a Parliament with a democratically elected Government. This will provide the basis for all Fijians to live in a just, exciting, free, strong and vibrant multicultural society,? Minister Tuitubou.

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He highlighted that Fijians now have equal opportunities and have economic, social and human rights included in the new constitution.

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64 year old Semisi Turaga of Vagadaci said Fijians should be proud of its achievements since its independence 44 years ago.

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Levuka Provincial administrator Levuka Elimi Rokoduru highlighted that today?s celebration was exciting and he acknowledged all families in Levuka for their contributionstowards Fiji?s independence.

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3?ASSISTANT MINISTER COMMENDS RUGBY BODY

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Government commended the work carried out by the Fiji National Rugby League especially in developing young Fijians who are talented in rugby.

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Assistance Minister for Sports, Hon Iliesa Delana today while opening the Sigatoka Nines Rugby League tournament at Lawaqa Park said the development work carried out by the national rugby league body was worth praise. ?

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?My Ministry is very supportive of the FNRL?s major development plans as it will boost the development of the sport in Fiji at all levels,? he said highlighting the two semi-final finishes at the Rugby League World Cup in 2008 and 2013.?

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?We believe that any future plans for development will augur well with Government?s efforts to harness the power of sports as a major vehicle for youth development in Fiji.?

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Government, he says, continues to recognise the contribution of sports to Fiji?s economy, national unity and social inclusiveness.?

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?In this regard, it is therefore important that sports development programs andfacilities are accessible to all our youth in Fiji,? Hon. Delana said.

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Hon. Delana paid tribute to two rugby league legends Brad Fitler and Andrew Johns for their contribution to the growth of the sport in the country.

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He also acknowledged the support of sponsors of sports in the country and urged youths to reciprocate the gesture of kindness of the sponsors.

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“The Nadroga people should ensure that we reciprocate all that has been rendered to us in kind and that is to remain being friendly and welcoming to tourists visiting our province, that we take care of our environment and ensure that our province remains a tourist destination in years to come,? he added. ?

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