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Rabuka rejects Tabuya’s comment on Diwali celebrations

November 11, 2020 4:43 pm
Social Democratic Liberal Party leader Sitiveni Rabuka, MP Lynda Tabuya and NFP Party leader Biman Prasad.

Social Democratic Liberal Party leader Sitiveni Rabuka has chastised fellow party member Lynda Tabuya for her now-deleted social media post regarding Diwali.

Rabuka says public figures need to be mindful of what they say.

Tabuya has received backlash from a wide cross-section of Fiji after she called for Diwali celebrations to be moved.

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The SODELPA Leader says he does not agree with MP Lynda Tabuya’s comments about Diwali.

“It is something that all high profile politician and people in every society, they need to be very cautious about what they say about their religious beliefs and we should also reflect on our own associations, our own relationships with the other religion we live side by side.”

Tabuya had called for Diwali to be celebrated on Monday – the designated public holiday because Sunday is a quiet day of reverence and reflection.

She also said there needed to be more wisdom and sensitivity, and those celebrating with fireworks need to be respectful.

Rabuka says if Fiji’s rugby wins can be celebrated by the whole country on a Sunday, he does not see why Hindus can’t enjoy the festival of lights with fireworks.

” I am sure we have all celebrated on a Sunday when our sevens team win in Hong Kong so we’ve offended some while going to the garden on Sunday when they are worshipping, the Seventh Day Adventists, worship and religion is about our own spirit that we should not be offended when other people observe theirs.”

National Federation Party leader Biman Prasad is also disappointed with Tabuya’s comments saying neither she nor any religious leader has powers to issue orders to followers of any faith.

“It is unfortunate that Lynda Tabuya and the statement from the Methodist Church which I’m happy has been withdrawn and I know Lynda has also apologized but no one should make any kind of statement like that ever, we are living in a multi-religious, multi ethnics society.”

Tabuya’s comments seem to have encouraged Fijians to come out and criticize Diwali being held on a Sunday with social media comments deteriorating into swearing and name-calling.

Questions have been sent to SODELPA General Secretary Emele Duituturaga who is yet to respond while FBC News is also reaching out to other Party members.

 

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