The Ministry of Industry and Trade permanent secretary, Mr Shaheen Ali was the chief guest at the crowning of Nadroga Sangam School Carnival on Saturday night, 1st September 2012.
“The funds raised during the Carnival will be used to support the development needs of the school, in an effort to create an enabling and learning environment for its students”, Mr Ali said.
“I was amazed to see the achievement by the school, with the community coming together, under a common purpose which is to support and empower our children, through education” said the Permanent Secretary.
The Permanent Secretary further added that quality, broad-based and multi-cultural education are the principles enshrined in the People’s Charter for Change, Peace and Progress. These principles have been put into action to take the country forward towards a modern, education and knowledge-based society.
“In order to attain 100% literacy, the Fijian Government for the very first time in Fiji’s history has strived to provide free and quality education for all. The Government has taken the responsibility of providing bus fares, and text books and even lunch to schools, to ease the burden on parents who are struggling to meet daily needs” said Mr. Ali.
Efforts by the Sangam organisation, Sigatoka community, sponsors, parents and Management of the school are commendable and are further assisting the Government in achieving its objective for free and quality education for all.
Projects such as upgrading of school building, provision of computer tables, purchase of photocopier and office files and filing system upgrade have been accomplished from the funds raised last year, while the further upgrading of building facilities, provision of internet services and upgrade of soccer ground are among the projects under consideration this year.
“I applaud the efforts of Nadroga Sangam School and its community to provide their students with the best of facilities to ensure that no child is left behind”, Mr Ali told guests at the event.
“The Ministry of Industry and Trade is focusing on developing small businesses and local industries, through the FIJIAN MADE-BUY FIJIAN campaign”.
The campaign encourages Fijians to buy locally produced and grown products, through which, we can create more jobs, retain money in our country and more importantly by helping families - we keep our children in schools. The Ministry has partnered with the students in the promotion of Buying Fijian Made – as they are our biggest advocates.
The Permanent Secretary further stated that “as we progress in “building a better Fiji” for all, each citizen is given the equal and common right as a Fijian (1 person 1 vote 1 value). The reduction of voting age to 18 years, is not only empowering our youth to make contribution to the development of Fiji but also indicates the decision-makers focus on building a fair, just and thriving society for our future generations and our children”.
“The Government will continue to work with the schools like Nadroga Sangam, and communities and groups to ensure that Fiji’s future is secure in our children, who are given the best education, in a healthy and safe environment” added Mr Ali.
Mr. Muniappa Goundar the Head Teacher of Nadroga Sangam stated that the turnout at this year’s Carnival, which was held for the second year since 2011, has been very impressive and this has become a much awaited event in Sigatoka after the Coral Coast Carnival stopped in 2008.
Mr. Goundar added that the Carnival received tremendous support from the major sponsor Sigatoka Electric, for the second year in a row, towards the improvement of school facilities. Co-sponsors included Coastal Rental Cars, Sudesh Transport Company and Sigatoka Motor Spares Limited and an additional 14 other sponsors have come forward to assist towards the betterment of the School.