Local News

17th April

PTI assists Fijian companies

Pacific Trade Invest Australia has assisted Fijian companies as part of the COVID-19 Freight Assistance Package. PTI Australia said an export survey revealed that freight costs are one of the top three barriers to export...

Leadership Fiji offers condolences

Leadership Fiji has expressed its deepest condolences on the passing of the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Philip. Leadership Fiji CEO, Sharyne Fong said they remembered the Duke of Edinburgh as the founder of the Commonwealth Study Conferences (CSC) in 1956 which has continued to bring together emerging leaders from all sectors of society across the...

Suspect in custody for EFL robbery

A man who allegedly stole cash worth more than $7000 from the Electricity Fiji Limited (EFL) office in Suva has been arrested. Police say the 51-year-old man is in custody following his alleged involvement in the robbery case. “The man who was armed with timber allegedly smashed the glass of the EFL office, forcefully entered...

COVID-19: More than 50,000 have received first dose

More than 50,000 people in Fiji have received their first dose of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, with 12,354 people vaccinated on Thursday alone. This is according to a statement by the Ministry of Health and Medical Services. “It is evident through this massive turnout that Fijians are once again committed to protecting themselves, their families,...

Asset management company acquires a Suva landmark

VB Holdings Ltd, a publicly-listed company on the South Pacific Stock Exchange (SPX) has made a $3million acquisition of a Suva landmark. The asset management company acquired the Bidesi & Sons Building on Waimanu Road in Suva. According to its public release issued by SPX, the multi-million dollar investment fulfilled an important stated objective for...

May dedicated to awareness on lupus; youngest case a six-year-old

Of the more than 60 cases of lupus recorded in Fiji in the last two years by the Lupus Foundation of Fiji, the youngest patient is a six-year-old. And according to the Foundation’s record, in 2019 alone, in a period of 10 months, 34 cases of lupus were recorded. Lupus is a long-term autoimmune disease...

Kocoma Village School rebuilding works to be completed by next school term

Construction of the Kocoma Village School that was destroyed at the height of STC Winston is expected to be completed by the next school term. Former school manager Ilisoni Vakaloloma said despite waiting for five years for proper classrooms to be built for their children, they were glad that the Government had provided the best...

What’s happening today!

Bula readers! Here’s a bit of information on some of the happenings around the country today – Saturday, April 17, 2021. But first, to the weather forecast for today until midnight tomorrow: Weather Cloudy periods with few showers over the Lau and Lomaiviti Group and the eastern parts and the interior of the larger islands...

Feakes at ease with vaccine jab

AUSTRALIAN High Commissioner John Feakes received his first dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine at the Vodafone Arena yesterday and said it was safe. “I feel entirely relaxed, this is a safe vaccine and so I’m treating it like any other vaccine I’ve had in my life,” he said. “The risk of taking this vaccine is...

Engineer returns to Australia to assist

TWELVE months after being deployed with engineers from the Republic of Fiji Military Forces to help Australians in the aftermath of bushfires, Sapper Luke Sorovakarua is back in the Land Down Under again. Last year, the heavy machinery plant operator was deployed to regional New South Wales on Operation Bushfire Assist and helped clear vital...

Farmers give their ultimatum

A GROUP of farmers in Tavua say they will not harvest their cane if they don’t receive a $20 per tonne fourth cane payment in May. The growers met National Federation Party leader Professor Biman Prasad at Dramasi, Tavua, on Thursday last week and collectively agreed not to harvest as a last resort. Speaking on...

Increased cases of bullying reported

FIJI is reporting increased cases of bullying because parents are not spending quality time with their children. This, according to Fiji Teachers Union general secretary Agni Deo Singh. He said bullying was an ongoing issue and a huge challenge for all stakeholders including parents, teachers, heads of schools and the Education Ministry. Mr Singh made...

16th April

Sexual violence being used as weapon of war in Ethiopia’s Tigray, U.N. says

NEW YORK (Reuters) -Sexual violence is being used as a weapon of war in Ethiopia’s Tigray, the U.N. aid chief told the Security Council on Thursday, prompting the U.S. envoy to challenge the body’s silence, asking: “Do African lives not matter as much as those experiencing conflict in other countries?” The U.N. official, Mark Lowcock,...

Airline’s management of environmental, social impacts ‘deemed adequate’

THE Asian Development Bank found Fiji Airways’ management of social and environmental impacts were “deemed adequate”. ADB president Masatsugu Asakawa stated this in his report to the board of directors in December 2020 while recommending the $65 million loan that was to be given to Fiji Airlines. “Fiji Airways monitors fuel consumption and carbon dioxide...

Program to upskill tobacco growers

PRIME Minister Voreqe Bainimarama officiated at a program launch designed to encourage more than 600 farmers to improve the yield and quality of their tobacco crops this week. The Star Farmer Incentive program, established by British American Tobacco Fiji was set up to help growers adopt the best agronomy practices and boost their production. “The...

Farmer vouches for dairy industry

SHAILENDRA Singh has been a dairy farmer for 16 years and has experienced firsthand the changes the industry has gone through over the past decade. The 42-year-old has a dairy farm in Verata, Ucunivanua and supplies 120 litres of milk per day to the Fiji Cooperative Dairy Company Ltd (FCDCL). Some of the changes he...

Happy to do the job

MANY pass them by without a second glance. Despite the vital work they do keeping our municipalities clean, street sweepers are often ignored and sometimes even ridiculed. This has not deterred Vilitati Katucoga. The Rukuruku, Ovalau villager has been keeping the streets of the Capital City clean for the past 15 years. But before that...

Exhibition features inmates’ artwork

ART and artistic expressions have transformative powers that can help persons in corrections centres develop hidden skills, says Speaker of Parliament Ratu Epeli Nailatikau. He highlighted this last Thursday during the Fiji Corrections Service (FCS) New Life art exhibition at the Grand Pacific Hotel, Suva. “The art initiative adds value and many benefits to the...

Society works towards cancer-free vision

THE Fiji Cancer Society (FCS) states it plans to conduct 40 community screenings across the country, four public awareness and screenings, 10 corporate screening and awareness and host three open days at different locations this year. Speaking at the Bushells Fiji’s Biggest Morning Tea, hosted by the Motibhai Group yesterday, society president Makrava Wilson said...

Cancer ‘curable at earliest stages’

CLINICIAN and obstetrician-gynaecologist Dr Alipate Vakamocea emphasised the importance of early detection at the Bushells Fiji’s Biggest Morning Tea event hosted by the Motibhai Group at Walu Bay on Wednesday. “Cancer is curable when presented in its earliest stages,” he said. Dr Vakamocea said although Fiji had recorded more cases of cervical cancer than other...

Leadership Fiji – Seru shares experience

This week we hear from one of our Alumni of the 2019 Leadership Fiji program, Serupepeli Vularika, one of the first responders and front-liners at Lautoka Hospital when COVID-19 hit our shores last year. For Seru, as he is fondly known, he was a shy and timid boy with little courage to speak up in...

Station releases new dalo variety

A NEW taro leaf blight tolerant variety was released at the Koronivia Research Station on Wednesday. Minister for Agriculture, Waterways and Environment Mahendra Reddy said the new variety would contribute towards the growth of the dalo industry. “The dalo industry itself is valued around $100 million, just the industry and its contribution to the ports...

No skill needed in agriculture

COVID-19 showed our strategic advantage is in agriculture, says Minister for Agriculture, Waterways and Environment Mahendra Reddy. He said since agriculture was a neutral sector, many people turned to agriculture after COVID-19. “It is a sector where we have total control,” he said. “It is a sector which is neutral with regard to skill requirement....

Hinduism is a secular and tolerant religion, says Koya

HINDUISM is a religion based on universality, it’s a value system, more than just a faith or religion one follows, says Commerce, Trade and Tourism Minister Faiyaz Koya. He made the comment while speaking during a Ram Naumi celebration at the home of Arun Lal at Vatucina Rd, Muanikoso Housing, Nasinu. “Hinduism is a secular...

Young boy transferred to CWM hospital; others in stable condition at Navua hospital

A 7-year-old boy was transferred to the CWM hospital following the accident at Pacific Harbour this afternoon. Police spokesperson Savaira Tabua said the young boy was a passenger in a white LPG vehicle driven by his 19-year-old brother and they were on their way to  Sigatoka when the accident occurred. It is alleged the 19-year-old overtook...

India to spend $200 million in next 5-7 years to promote hydrogen use

CHENNAI (Reuters) – India will spend $200 million over the next five to seven years to promote the use of hydrogen, Indu Shekhar Chaturvedi, the top bureaucrat at India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, said at a virtual industry event on Thursday. India has asked its state-run oil and gas companies to set up...

Fijian salt making – 50-year-old traditional knowledge revived

In December 2019, UNDP Fiji through the Accelerator Lab Pacific embarked on an experiment to understan d the interplay between traditional knowledge, cultural identity and climate resilience. Our research indicated that resilient communities used traditional indigenous knowledge as a foundation for decision making and in some communities the lack of codification and diffusion of this...

Police don’t want ‘Band-Aid solution’

ACTING Police Commissioner Rusiate Tudravu says he does not want a “Band-Aid solution” to the Nabua crisis and promised to take instigators to task. He said he instructed his operations team to find a permanent fix after two violent and bloody brawls between Mead Rd housing and Sukanaivalu Rd youths in Suva this month. Mr...

No fatalities confirmed from head-on collision at Pacific Harbour

No fatalities have yet been confirmed in an accident along the Queens Road in Pacific Harbour. Police spokeswoman Savaira Tabua confirmed there was an accident but could not say how many passengers were injured and taken to hospital or if there were any fatalities. “We are still waiting for our traffic officers at the scene...

Arrest in brawl case

ACTING Police Commissioner Rusiate Tudravu says an arrest has been made in relation to the Easter weekend brawl in Nabua, Suva. He said while the focus at present was on discussion and dialogue between the Sukanaivalu Rd and Mead Rd housing groups, police were on to those who were responsible for the melee. “For the...

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