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Work of art

Alifereti Malai’s life is as colourful as the pieces he paints. His art is a reflection of a life that went through twists and turns, and the fact that he emerged unscathed through it all,...

Humble beginnings

One of the country’s largest distributors of office and school equipment, Al-Hamd Smart Living, has cemented its place in Fiji’s business landscape. The Nadi-based company is run by managing director Ashfaaq Ahmad Khan and matriarch Shamshad Begum, who is also a director of the company. Recalling the family’s humble beginnings, Mr Khan said his family...

Taking a hit

Australia leaves Fiji to flounder Fiji’s fiscal year begins in August, and the government brought down its 2020- 21 budget in July. The most striking feature of that budget is that total expenditure in the coming year is budgeted to be virtually unchanged compared with the preceding two years. Adjusting for (mild) inflation, expenditure in...

Tens of thousands rally against Belarus president in ‘people’s inauguration’

MINSK (Reuters) – Masked police dragged people into vans and fired stun grenades and tear gas to disperse crowds as tens of thousands marched for a seventh straight weekend to demand veteran Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko quit. Protesters chanted “impostor” and “Sveta is our president” as they marched through Minsk and other cities decked out...

TISI Sangam commended for its commitment in promoting unity and diversity

The India Sanmarga Ikya (TISI) Sangam, one of Fiji’s largest sociocultural and educational organisations has been commended for its remarkable contributions towards cultural diversity and humanity. The organisation organised its Annual Firewalking Festival and Annual pooja ceremony held at the Shri Raja Maha Mariamman Temple in Howell Road, Suva yesterday. The event was attended by...

UN Resident Coordinator begins tour of Kadavu

The United Nations (UN) Resident Coordinator, Sanaka Samarasinha started his tour of Kadavu today to check on the  progress of existing UN programs on the island. According to the UN Pacific, both Mr Samarasinha  and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs were strong on their multisectoral message, encouraging both UN and Government programs, to break down...

Betrayed Macron says will continue Lebanon efforts, eyes Hezbollah

PARIS (Reuters) – French President Emmanuel Macron admonished Lebanon’s leaders on Sunday for serving their own interests ahead of their country and vowed to push ahead with efforts to prevent chaos, but appeared to have no back up plan should his initiative fail. Lebanon’s prime minister-designate, Mustapha Adib, quit on Saturday after failing to line...

Biman: Fiji’s history did not begin in 2006

Biman attacks blame game Past governments who are now copping the blame for everything that goes wrong in Government have also contributed to the nation’s development, says the National Federation Party. NFP leader Prof Biman Prasad said Fiji’s history and industries began well before 2006 and was the result of hard work by farmers, entrepreneurs...

‘There were talks of split’

Talks for an official split from the Social Democratic Liberal Party of Fiji (SODELPA) had been initiated by certain party members after its suspension, claims general secretary Emele Duituturaga. Ms Duituturaga said the idea was initiated during a critical time for the party, adding it however made members rethink reasons for the suspension. Commenting on...

‘No split’

Duituturaga: Sodelpa Continuously Challenged There is no split within the Social Democratic Liberal Party (SODELPA), says general secretary Emele Duituturaga. Commenting on the party’s management board meeting last Saturday, Ms Duituturaga said SODELPA was continuously challenged with being inclusive and liberal, but essentially it was also a vanua-based party. “It was great seeing our leadership...

Guests happy with hotel hygiene

Local guests to Shangri-La’s Fijian Resort and Spa say they feel confident in the COVID-19 measures being taken to ensure they enjoy a safe weekend getaway. This was the feedback to this newspaper during the resort’s Beach, Beats and Eats Oktoberfest-themed event last weekend. Resort executive housekeeper Denis Cruz said a spike in guests from...

Tapura retains Tahiti’s two seats in French Senate

The two candidates of French Polynesia’s ruling Tapura Huiraatira party have been chosen as the territory’s members of the French Senate. Lana Tetuanui and Teva Rohfritsch were elected for a six-year term in the first round with the backing of almost 68 percent of the votes. They were chosen by an electoral college of 728...

Musicians laud entertainment fest

Inside Out band leader Kuki Nalawa says Shangri-La’s Fijian Resort and Spa’s Beach, Beats and Eats event has been a huge boost for the group. “When COVID-19 hit Fiji, it literally took the rug out from under the feet of all musicians and entertainers,” he said. “So when Shangri-La’s Fijian food and beverage director Gerrard...

Resort offers Fiji Day special

Shangri-la’s Fijian Resort and Spa today launched its Fiji Day special room rate of $165 per night. Resort manager Chris Hamilton said the limited time offer was put together to mark Fiji’s 50th anniversary of Independence. “This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our local residents to experience the Shangri-La’s Fijian Resort for a very special...

Food and music event a local hit

If there is one resort that believes in the local market and has seen their confidence rewarded, it’s Shangri-La’s Fijian Resort and Spa. Director food and beverage Gerrard McNamara said the Yanuca Island resort had been overwhelmed with the public response since they began their Beach, Beats and Eats weekend events a few months ago....

Greece says first migrant dies of COVID-19 since the pandemic

ATHENS (Reuters) – A male migrant died of COVID-19 on Sunday, the first reported death of an asylum seeker since the pandemic broke out in Greece in late February, a government official told Reuters. The 61-year-old Afghan, a father of two children, who lived at the migrant camp of Malakasa north of Athens, was treated...

Samoa extends State of Emergency despite no Covid cases

The Samoan government has extended its Covid-19 State of Emergency until 26 October. The Samoa Observer reported the weekend announcement by Cabinet will take the country into a seventh month of restrictions despite Samoa not having recorded any cases of coronavirus. The extension was met with an appeal for common sense in government decision-making from some sectors...

France’s centre right keeps control of Senate in election

PARIS (Reuters) – France’s centre-right Les Republicains party was on course to maintain its majority in the Senate after Sunday’s vote, while President Emmanuel Macron’s centrist party avoided mishap 18 months away from a general election. Partial results also showed France’s green party making gains, with leaders of the Europe Ecology – The Greens saying...

Opposition MPs begin listening tour in the Western division

Members of the Opposition began their tour of the Western Division today for the  Parliamentary Opposition Leaders Listening Tour. The traveling party included the Opposition Leader Sitiveni Rabuka, National Federation Party leader Biman Prasad, Lenora Qereqeretabua and Niko Nawaikula. NFP leader Professor Biman Prasad said the tour was important for the Opposition members to find...

Covid-19 among crew halts French Polynesia cruise

A cruise from Tahiti to the Marquesas Islands has been aborted after several crew members were informed that they were Covid-19 positive. The Aranui 5 had already left the French Polynesian capital and was forced to return to Papeete. Seven crew are affected. Tahiti Nui TV reported that locally resident passangers were allowed to return home while foreigners...

Romania’s ruling centrists ahead in municipal vote

BUCHAREST (Reuters) – Romania’s ruling centrist Liberals emerged as the leading party in a municipal ballot on Sunday, including in the capital, exit polls showed, bolstering their chances of forming the next government after a Dec. 6 parliamentary election. The ballot is a popularity test ahead of the national vote for the minority cabinet of...

Despite criticism Aust coal-miner confident of PNG go-ahead

An Australian company aiming to mine coal and build a coal-fired power station in Papua New Guinea is dismissing criticism of the plan. Australian environmental advocacy group, Jubiliee Australia, claimed what Mayur Resources was planning was costly, destructive and not needed. It said PNG was gradually growing its renewable energy base while the chosen power...

Fiji and Singapore reaffirm commitment o upscale partnership

Fiji and Singapore remain committed to strengthen bilateral relations and maximise cooperation opportunities for the mutual benefit of key development interests of both nations. This was conveyed during a virtual introductory meeting held on Friday last week, between Singapore’s Non-Resident High Commissioner to the Republic of Fiji and Singapore’s Non-Resident Ambassador to the Pacific Islands...

Massacre in Mexican bar leaves 11 people dead

MONTERREY, Mexico (Reuters) – A massacre in a bar left 11 people dead on Sunday, Mexican authorities said, as the country grapples with a record homicide rate despite the government’s pledge to stop gang violence. The attorney general’s office of the central Mexican state of Guanajuato said the bodies of seven men and four women...

French Polynesia elects its French Senators

French Polynesia will today choose its two members of the French Senate. 728 special voters will cast their votes at a Papeete high school to determine which two of the 13 candidates will join France’s Upper House for a six-year term. Most eligible voters are delegates of local councils, but also include all 57 territorial...

Former Dept of Heritage and Arts employee sentenced to 24 months for fraud

A former employee of the Department of Heritage and Arts who was convicted for claiming transport hire amounting to $660 was sentenced to 24 months imprisonment in the Suva Magistrates Court today. Rosalia Muavesi who was charged by the Fiji Independent Commission Against Corruption (FICAC) in 2019  pleaded guilty to one count each count of...

Former Samoa CJ raises concern about ‘criminal condition of juvenile prison

Conditions for juveniles at Samoa’s Tanumalala prison have been described as criminal by the former acting Chief justice, Vui Clarence Nelson. Vui also said the youth looked like ”caged animals” at the facility. The Samoa Observer newspaper reported the criticism was contained in an email to District, Supreme and Lands and Titles Court judges. This followed a...

Fiji expected to benefit expected to benefit from KIWA initiative

A new area of cooperation in “Climate Resilience” is being developed through the innovative partnership between Fiji and France. This was conveyed on Thursday last week, as the French Ambassador to Fiji, Jean-François Fitou met with the Permanent Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister, Immigration and Sugar Industry and Acting Permanent Secretary Foreign Affairs, Yogesh...

Diplomat named Mali PM, meeting regional bloc demand for civilian

BAMAKO (Reuters) – Former foreign minister Moctar Ouane was named as Mali’s interim prime minister, state television said on Sunday, a move likely to trigger the lifting of sanctions imposed by the West Africa regional bloc in the aftermath of the military coup last month. The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) said on...

Tahiti jail detects 20 Covid-19 cases

The Covid-19 outbreak in French Polynesia has reached Tahiti’s prison and infected 20 people. The French High Commission said after two cases were detected among corrections staff, tests revealed an initial tally of 13. A second round of testing then found another four cases among staff and three among the prisoners. While the employees were...

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