Service is the key – Father and son an inspiration for family and ‘vanua’

Speaker of Parliament, Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu, son, with Minister for Health, Dr. Antonio Lalabalavu and grandsons, William, 11, Raivalita, 12, and Tuikilakila, 14, cut the cake during the vakasenuqanuqa ceremony at the Albert Park pavilion in Suva on Saturday, February 04, 2023. Picture: JONACANI LALAKOBAU

Speaker of Parliament Ratu Naiqama Lalabalavu urged family members and friends to teach their children, who are the future leaders of the country, Christian values.

The gone turaga bale na Tui Cakau said in return these children would become better citizens of Fiji. Ratu Naiqama made the following remarks during a traditional ‘vakasenuqanuqa’ ceremony at Suva’s Albert Park on Saturday.

Ratu Naiqama and his son Health Minister Dr Atonio Lalabalavu were accorded the traditional ceremony by the Lalabalavu family in Suva.

More than 100 people gathered at the Albert Park Pavilion to celebrate their achievements.

Ratu Naiqama humbly thanked his family members for showing their unwavering support and said without the support from his loved ones, his family would not have made it to where they were now.

He said the past couple of years were quite challenging for him, but he put his faith and trust in God and urged others to do the same.

He also acknowledged the hard work and support of his son, Dr Atonio Lalabalavu and said together they would work hard for the betterment of Fiji, especially for the children.

“We have achieved this together, not just us. This is for our whole family,” Ratu Naiqama said.

“I urge parents to support your children in their education as this will take them far in their journey. For those of you who are working, work hard and perform your tasks diligently.

“And most importantly, never forget our God and teach your children Christian values so that they become better citizens of our beloved nation.”

He reminded his family members that he was not the only Tui Cakau that has served in Parliament.

He named a few that have served in Parliament and also in the Senate.

“I hope that some of you here will aspire to be in these positions in the future, or even better.”

Ratu Naiqama and Dr Ratu Atonio served as Opposition MPs in the last term of Parliament before the general elections in December last year.

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