Silence covered the chiefly village of Naduri in Macuata as the Tui Macuata, Ratu Wiliame Katonivere made his way across the village green for the first time in his capacity as the President.
The women sat bowed down in a freshly decorated shed, the children sat in a line across the village green and the men; some traditionally dressed in masi and leaves and others sitting quietly under a mango tree.
Ratu Wiliame could not contain his emotions, walking to his prepared sitting in the middle of the village green.
The Vanua was according him a traditional welcoming ceremony.
Presenting the tabua, Taukei Namara (Kings Maker) Ratu Peni Sogia says the Vanua is not only welcoming him as their high chief but as the new President of Fiji.
Accepting the Tabua, Ratu Wiliame thanked the Vanua for according the traditional welcome for him and his wife, First Lady Filomena Dikumete Katonivere.
The President thanked the elders for the role they have played in helping nurture him for the highest position of the land, the Presidency.
Ratu Wiliame told the people of Naduri that his journey to the State House began from the village.
And it is his prayer that the Vanua will continue to protect and preserve its traditions and culture.
He also urged the people of Naduri to continue their support towards the Vanua o Caumatalevu and the government of the day.
An emotional cousin Adi Nomai Katonivere says they are extremely proud of Ratu Wiliame as he is a humble and down-to-earth chief.
She adds, they never thought that Ratu Wiliame would one day enter the highest office of the land and that speaks volumes of the kind of chief he is.
Ratu Wiliame is the first Tui Macuata to take up the Presidency.
He is also the youngest ever to take up the position of President of the Republic of Fiji.