From Yvonne Aitu SuniaMafile'o (4 November 2010)

I am curious as to how Bainimarama's name got to be on the airport facility? What's wrong with Rotuma International Airport? Or maybe use a Rotuman name—Malhaha-Hapmaka International Airport? We don't see any facility in Fiji named after a Rotuman! Not to mention the hundreds of Rotumans who have helped to build Fiji. So why does the name Bainimarama have to be used? Not using Bainimarama's name will not in any way disrespect or degrade his "contributions" to Rotuma. I don't know how other Rotumans feel about it; how about the Island Council? Or is this their idea? Wouldn't it be nice if the only international airport to be built on the island has an authentic Rotuman name? Some would say that it's only a name, but trust me, if you live here in the big USA, maintaining your culture and language is invaluable so as not to reek of being the same as everyone else.

If this takes place on Rotuma, then as Rotumans, we can be assured that other naming events, facilities, etc. that will be built on the island will take on foreign names: Frankie's Wharf, Singh's Super Market, Frank's Airport Canteen. Changing to become "modern" does not mean that our little island has to take on foreign names and attitudes or obligations. Perhaps Rotuma is a colony of Fiji after all!

Avat ma avat ka gou la hoif se otou hanueta, ka gou la kel se asa ma mal ne fa' se ri garuega ma ri koroa, ka gou la inea ne gou heleuf ia se oto hanueta 'e Rotuma. Ka nono ka teranit ne gou la hoif se Rotuma, ka pu se 'a airport ta, ka fa se ma se as ne Airport ta Bainimarama… International ….. ma kat fu lelei pau ra se oto huga ne airport ta ne fu se oto hanua ne oto te mamfua, ka he ka se fa ne hanua tu.

From Betty Kuna‘u (9 November 2010)

Noa‘ia, sadly I have the same curious question when I first read the article on naming our one and only airport, a significant infrastructure in Rotuma after a person. We're talking ROTUMA. We're talking about respect for an entirely different group of people, culture, land, etc., that's under the care of the Fiji Government which, by the way, has the moral obligation to assist us anyway. Let's not forget, we Rotumans have also contributed to the development of Fiji, and just because we're finally getting the long overdue help from the current government doesn't mean that we should name a significant infrastructure after a person.

The same respect goes to everything about Rotuma: Rotuman soil, Rotuman people, Rotuman language, the high school in Rotuma, the wharf in Rotuma, the airport in Rotuma or possibly, the 'Bainimara Airport'. Huh? "Come On!" What's wrong with Rotuma International Airport?

Perhaps an alternative would be to errect a plaque at the airport entrance as a show of appreciation for Bainimarama's significant role in contributing to the development or renovation of the airport.

‘Otou hanisi ma uaua‘aki la‘ se te‘ ne Gagaj hue‘ ne Rotuma.
Fai‘eksia ma Hanisiof.

From Alan Howard (10 November 2010)

I have heard from an anonymous correspondent in Fiji that the name "Bainamarama Rotuma International Airport" was proposed by government but not been confirmed yet. According to this correspondent, "Sources from Rotuma have confirmed that the people in Rotuma prefer the airport to be named 'Rotuma International Airport', so that will be the name of the airport and not 'Bainamarama Rotuma International Airport' as earlier reported. There is a lot of controversial discussion on this issue so I just wanted to clarify it before it gets out of hand."

From Timote Rupeni (29 November 2010)

After reading Sanimeli's update, I am forwarding the following view that may interest our Rotuman readers:

It's great to hear the drumbeats from the island and to know what is being planned for the island. Sanimeli should keep up the good work as the correspondent for us, the silent majority. Even keeping up with the happenings in Fiji can be very challenging as events are moving at a very rapid pace—what we sometimes refer to colloquailly as "at full speed." The opportunities are unfolding rapidly for those who are interested.

Some of the recent events/happenings, I never dreamt would happen, but it has for the betterment of the people. So now "anything is possible" would be a better motto to adopt. Who would have dreamt that one day Rotuma would have an International Airport andbe a port of call ? I can only say, it's Gods timing.

Yes, new businesses will arrive on the island and should be welcomed on one hand and given the rule-book with the other hand for them to follow.

Keeping the environment clean should be our top priority; rotting buses does not add up to a clean environment. I am still puzzled at our toleration of the flies and mosquito population that should be included in any future census. Any planned visit to the island draws my attention to the menace these two creatures pose to visitors and how they spoil enjoyment of the island. For the flies, I think they have plenty of food from the rubbish that is disposed of indiscriminately. What the island needs is a hygienic rubbish collection and disposal system. Of course it will cost money, but there is no way out of prolonging this cost. For the mosquitos, I think it is the abundance of breeding places that recycles them. If we can deny them their breeding places then we may have the upper hand and have a true little paradise.

Last but not least is my concern that any boat servicing Rotuma, or for that matter any island, should be certified sea worthy. Quite rightly so, since the 500 km of deep ocean between Vanua Levu and Rotuma is not to played around with. Any disaster within this stretch of sea would make timely rescue efforts difficult if not impossible. If you are lucky enough to be eating seagulls and flying fish until rescued that would be amazing. Nature should not be underestimated as some have learned the hard way.

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