Tevita Momoedonu

Prime Minister of Fiji (1946-2020)

Ratu Tevita Momoedonu (born 4 February 1941 - November 26, 2020) is a Fijian chief and has served as the fifth Prime Minister of Fiji twice – each time extremely briefly. Both appointments were to get around constitutional technicalities; his first term of office – on 27 May 2000 lasted only a few minutes. His second term – from 14 to 16 March 2001 was for two days. He subsequently served his country as Ambassador to Japan. Using his chiefly title of "Taukei Sawaieke", he later led pushes for the Yasana of Ba to secede from the Burebasaga and Kubuna Confederacies to form their own fourth confederacy under the Tui Vuda, Ratu Josefa Iloilo, who died in 2011.



Comments on Japan, 7 October 2002


Source: Fiji's Tokyo Embassy website.

  • There we were right in the heart one of the largest Metropolitan Centres of the world, partaking in a gesture that was as old as the beginning of diplomatic relations between sovereign nations in so splendid a manner as must, without doubt, be such a sobering induction to any envoy to Japan. It had a tremendous impact on my outlook, and I look eagerly forward to doing, saying, advising and thinking whatever may best serve the preservation and enhancement of Fiji in Japan.
  • The Imperial Palace of Japan is like a breathtaking oasis snoozing in the midst of a concrete panorama. That the Tokyo Metropolitan Government painstakingly built their Capital City around the Imperial Palace is clearly reflective of the centrality of the monarchy’s unifying role in the life of Japanese society. It is a heart-warming thought and a valuable lesson to glean, in terms of its overall resilience to the challenges of modernization. As I see it, this feature of indigenous heritage is itself the most obvious common denominator between the Japanese and the Fijian peoples. The Japanese are being able to safeguard against an erosion of their respect, passion and regard for the Imperial Family in the face of external pressures. In the long run, this will, as a uniting stand, ensure their survival as a community of people. Now, that should certainly be a lesson for Fiji to learn from.
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