Intermarriage removes prejudice

An iTaukei woman of Solomon descent believes intermarriage will help to defuse racial tension, remove prejudices and promote national unity.

Latileta Naqiri Singh was commenting after the burial of her Indo-Fijian husband Lochan Triloc Singh.

During the family church service, on the eve of the funeral, Anglican Bishop Qiliho preached in English, the prayers were said in iTaukei and English and the hymns were sung in Hindi.

Around the kava (yaqona) bowl, everyone from different ethnic backgrounds sat cross-legged in a relaxed atmosphere.

Mrs Singh said: “Love conquers all. We had to overcome the cultural, religious and racial sensitivities of the time to marry.”

“I am from Natalaicake Village in Ba. He is from Lautoka,” she said.

“He came from a staunch Hindu background and me from an Anglican background.”

“Gradually, he began to warm towards my religion and eventually joined.”

“He even donated a piece of our land here in front of our home for our church.”

“He helped build it too.”

“Triloc felt at home in our community. He regarded everyone equal. There is no Indo-Fijian or iTaukei, we are all one, he believed,” said Latileta.

“Now my children, grandchildren and great grandchildren call themselves Fijians.”

Latileta welcomed the Constitutional provision of equal citizenry and the common identity.

“It’s the best thing that has happened to this country. It makes my children feel a sense of belonging in this country,” she said.


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News category: Asia Pacific.

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