Celebrating Fiji Day 2021

Islands of Fiji

Celebrating Fiji Day 2021

 

The Fijian community celebrates 51 years since the signing of the declaration of independence from Great Britain on 10 October 1970.

This year’s theme is aptly titled ‘Togetherness for a sustainable Fiji’.

As the 10 October is on a weekend, the holiday is also celebrated on the Monday.

Fiji Day is celebrated with pride around Australia and New Zealand.

The large diaspora communities have celebrated the day through prayer, song and dance from Bundaberg to the Gold Coast and Brisbane and at events across the country.

Other cities where lockdowns are still in place including Sydney and Melbourne will have Fiji Day celebrations online.

Join Fijian community leaders Thelma Trey Thomas (aka MC Trey and Sevu Waqa) as they bring you Fiji Day online presented by Tapastry and Kokonutvibe.

Click here to join Fiji Day 2021 celebrations online

 

Background:

Fiji Day also acknowledges the day when Fiji’s nominal king and warlord, Ratu Seru Epenisa Cakobau and fellow Fijian chiefs ceded to Great Britain, and the British took control of the islands as the Colony of Fiji.

The late and former Ratu Sir Kamisese Mara was then appointed as Fiji’s first prime minister on 10 October 1970, when Fiji attained its independence.

Frank Bainimarama is the 8th and current Prime Minister of Fiji since 2007. His  career as a naval officer and commander of the Fijian Military Forces brings great pride to the nation as he unites the country on issues including COVID-19.

 

Frank Bainimarama

Frank Bainimarama welcomed at Fiji Day celebrations in Sydney 2014.

 

Fiji is a multicultural island nation that embraces all communities including the Indigenous Fijians (Fijians of Melanesian and Polynesian ancestry), the Indo-Fijians, the Chinese and the Europeans.

Australia and New Zealand play very important roles in the region.

The week leading up to Fiji Day is known as Fiji Week and consists of a series of religious language and cultural events that celebrate Fiji’s diversity.

Celebrations during Fiji Day will include Kava made from the root of the kava shrub. Kava is an important part of the celebrations along with Fijian cuisine, famous throughout the world with its traditional underground ‘lovo’ pits through to Indian and Chinese spiced dishes and tropical fruits, vegetables, fish and wild pork.

Justin Narayan is an example of the young and trendy Australian Indo-Fijian and Masterchef Australia winner 2021.

Of the 322 islands in Fiji and over 500 small islets only 110 islands are inhabited due to the rugged terrain.

The largest city is Suva located on Viti Levu (Great Fiji) the largest of the Islands.

It’s hard to believe that the small island nation produces some of the most prodigious talents and legends in Rugby Union and Rugby League.

The Fijian Rugby Sevens team is one of the most admired and their national team is one of the most successful in the world.

Fiji is also one of the most successful nations to compete in the Hong Kong Sevens. Whether it is the Cibi war dance before the beginning of each match or the Bole war cry the fans have passionately supported the team.

In the past, successful sportsman and professional golfer Vijay Singh rose through the ranks and put Fiji on the world map.

There is much to celebrate with great pride for all who those who have Fijian ancestry including the arts and entertainment as well as business and trade.

The Fijian flag features the Union Jack, which is a representation of Fiji’s ties with the United Kingdom.

The flag also features a shield that was derived from the national coat of arms. This design symbolises the agriculture of the nation, including a cocoa pod, sugar cane, bananas, and a coconut palm.

 

Fijian Flag

 

If you are looking to turn up the music, click here to listen to the Fijian Hip Hop song called ‘Wassap’ to get the party started.

 

 

Image Source: M4E Photography

 

If you enjoyed reading this article make sure you subscribe to our social media channels.

CulturalPulse FacebookCulturalPulse Instagram and CulturalPulse Twitter.


Dee Raghavan

Dee Raghavan is the Senior Manager, Engagement Marketing at CulturalPulse. She has a passion for writing, travelling and experiencing other cultures through sport, music, film, art and food. Got a story to tell? Get in touch: [email protected]