The following letter has been sent to some of the print media in Fiji:
“Recently much publicity has been given by one of the two Fiji dailies on an Englishman proudly unfurling the Fiji flag on the roof of the world, Mt Everest (FT 7/11, FT 13/11). By coincidence, a week ago at the rugby league world cup match between Fiji Bati and England, many Fijian fans were enthusiastically and proudly waving Fiji’s ‘noble banner blue’ with the British Union Jack on it, and no doubt shouting ‘go Bati go’, ‘go Fiji go’.
Following the convincing defeat of the Fiji Bati, I could not help but wonder if the victorious English were inspired by the Union Jack being waved all over the stadium! Being on the field of play, the English players perhaps could not hear the chorus of ‘go Fiji go’ which accompanied the Fiji flag waving!
To forever stop the confusion over whose flag, Fijians are waving, Fiji should embrace a nationally authentic flag.
Surely, after more than 25 years of being a sovereign republic, it is time to have a flag that reflects this fact, and better represent Fiji in international community. No former colony of Britain in Africa, the Caribbean, and Asia has the Union Jack prominently painted on its national flag.
Closer to home Fiji can learn from Samoa, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, Palau, the Marshall Islands, Tonga, FSM and Vanuatu. It should be a matter of embarrassment that the country that chairs the Group of 77 and China, and calls itself a republic has a flag with monarchic symbols!”
Professor Vijay Naidu
Director of Development Studies
Head of School of Government, Development and International Affairs
Faculty of Business and Economics
University of the South Pacific