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From Fijitimes Online (28 October 2006)

Island boy exceeds expectations

by Mary Johns

Rani Tifare Fesaitu, TPAF's Apprentice of the year, after graduating yesterday

ALL he wanted was to follow in his father's footsteps, so being named the Training and Productivity Authority of Fiji's apprentice of the year was overwhelming for the island boy.

Rani Tifare Fesaitu, 25, said he never thought that a lad from Rotuma who started at a job straight out of high school could outdo apprentices from the mainland.

Yesterday, Mr Fesaitu, who was among 400 graduates, won top honours as the overall best apprentice and the best apprentice in automotive engineering, at TPAF's graduation ceremony in Suva.

"Hard work paid off for me," he said. "I am just happy and surprised.

"I didn't expect to win especially when I came from Rotuma, applied for a job at Asco Motors and have been working here ever since.

"It's been five years since I started and I always thought that people from the mainland would be smarter."

Mr Fesaitu thanked his family and workmates for their support.

Among his spoils were a certificate, three trophies, a mobile phone, an overseas trip to either Australia or New Zealand and a two-week job attachment in Australia or New Zealand.

Note: Rani Fesaitu is the son of Taukave Mario and Lisi Susana of Savlei, Itu'ti'u.

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