Local News

16th October

Realignment of staff at FSC head office

FIJI Sugar Corporation CEO Graham Clark has informed his staff of a “realignment” at the head-office. The announcement in an email correspondence formalizes the redundancy of the General Manager Corporate Services, Head of Strategic Communications,...

Vaniqi: Sugarcane belt at risk as a result of climate change

FIJI’s sugarcane belt is at risk as a result of climate change, says University of the South Pacific student Apenisa Vaniqi. He is pursuing a postgraduate diploma in development studies. Mr Vaniqi has been selected to be part of a team that will be travelling to Santiago, Chile, in December to be part of COP...

Wet weather causes delay in sports complex completion

INCLEMENT weather has caused delay in the completion of phase three of the Sawaieke sports complex in Sawaieke Village, Gau. Republic of Fiji Military Forces Engineering Unit warrant officer Luke Soro said they had managed to complete phase one and two of the project. “By next month, we are expected to hand over phase four...

Sawaieke district in Gau invests in horses

INVESTING in horses from the highlands of Nadroga/Navosa has made work easier for yaqona farmers in Nawaikama and Sawaieke villages, Gau, in the Lomaiviti Group. Sawaieke district representative Kelepi Mataitoga said yaqona farms in Gau were located deep in rugged terrain and sometimes farmers would spend days on their farms because of the distance. “Last...

15th October

Shameen-Khan appointed as chair of UNDCO working group

NAZHAT Shameem Khan Fiji’s permanent representative to the United Nations in Geneva has been appointed as the Chair of the Working Group on Trafficking in Persons at the United Nations Organisations for Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in Vienna, Austria. She said it was a great honour for Fiji to be nominated as Chair of this...

Fijians safe in Japan; embassy to monitor wellbeing of Fijian nationals

ALL FIJIANS residing in Japan are safe. The officials from the Fiji Embassy in Tokyo with the assistance of Fiji’s Honorary Consulate Offices throughout Japan have received this confirmation. The Fiji Embassy in Tokyo will continue to closely monitor the situation and ensure the wellbeing of all Fijian nationals throughout Japan. Typhoon Hagibbis made landfall...

MoU to help in solving waste disposal

PROGRAMS and technologies are needed to remediate waste including municipal solid waste, human sewage, animal manure and used tires etc. This was highlighted by the Minister of Waterways and Environment, Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Dr Mahendra Reddy during a press conference to announce the signing of the MoU between Infinite Power Company and the Ministry...

Usamate: Disaster is everybody’s business

DISASTER is everybody’s business. Minister for National Disaster Management Jone Usamate made the comment during the launch of the 2019 National Disaster awareness in Taveuni today. He said this week’s celebrations also aimed to advance the universal goal of sustainable development, disaster risk reduction and climate change and safeguard the environment. “I would like to...

Weather watch: Heavy rain alert for some parts of the group

HEAVY rain alert remains in force for Yasawa and Mamanuca Group, Western half of Viti Levu, Kadavu and nearby smaller islands. The weather bulletin issued from the National Weather Forecasting Centre in Nadi this afternoon says a trough of low pressure lies slow moving over Fiji. Meanwhile, another trough of low pressure just to the...

Rose Were is New Caledonia’s special envoy to Fiji

FRENCH Ambassador to Fiji Jean-Francois Fitou has announced the arrival of Rose Were,  New Caledonia’s special envoy to Fiji. He made the introduction during a press conference held in Ratu Sukuna Rd, Suva today. “Rose and I will work together to make New Caledonia a force for good in Fiji,” he said. “This is a...

USP observes a minute of silence for Typhoon Hagibis victims in Japan

PARTICIPANTS at the University of the South Pacific Pre-Cop training in Statham campus in Vatuwaqa, Suva today observed a minute of silence to commemorate lives lost in the recent Typhoon Hagibis that hammered Japan two days ago. USP’s Pacific Centre for Environment and Sustainable Development communications officer Moira Raduva said the region has also witnessed...

More rural women to train as solar engineers

WITH the construction of the Barefoot College, more rural women will be given opportunities to train as solar engineers. Minister of Women Children and Poverty Alleviation Mereseini Vuniwaqa highlighted this at Rural Women’s Day celebrations in Tavua today. “Apart from looking at climate change and disaster risk resilient projects, my ministry has women empowerment programs...

‘A lot has been done’ in the North

THE President Jioji Konrote believes stakeholders including government officials have contributed to the development of Vanua Levu under the Look North Policy initiative. In addressing heads of government departments in Labasa this morning, President Konrote said the North had great potentials and it was encouraging to see developments happen over past years. “For those of...

USP students to be part of COP25 in Chile

FIVE students from the University of the South Pacific will be part of the COP25 in Santiago, Chile in December. They are currently part of a Pre-Cop training at the university’s Statham campus, funded by the Pacific Adaptation to Climate Change and Resilience Building (PACRES). European Union Ambassador for the Pacific, Surijo Seam said Fiji’s...

Police seek information to find remand prisoner

THE Fiji Police Force is on the hunt for escapee Timoci Belo. Police spokesperson Ana Naisoro said remand prisoner Timoci Belo escaped from the Suva Court house this morning and police are currently searching for his whereabouts. “Belo escaped from the custody of a police officer while being escorted to court,” Ms Naisoro said. “Please call...

Farmers advised to refrain from damaging drainage systems

CROPS must be planted at least three meters away from the drains and you should also maintain the farm access roads when upgrading and maintenance works have been completed. Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development, Waterways and Environment Dr Mahendra Reddy said this during an informal talanoa session with farmers of Doguru community yesterday....

723 cases reported to police since 2014

AN alarming 37 children remain missing in Fiji from the 723 cases reported to police over the past five years. The statistics for those unaccounted for since 2014 include 23 females and 14 males. The revelation was made by Minister for Defence, National Security and Foreign Affairs, Inia Seruiratu in a written response to questions...

Machine to help lower import bill

IN a bid to reduce Fiji’s $20 million vegetable oil import bill, the Government has introduced coconut husking, deshelling and hot air dryers at the Copra Millers Fiji Ltd mill in Savusavu. While commissioning the new equipment, Minister for Agriculture Dr Mahendra Reddy said it would cushion the workload on the 120,000 people who depend...

Obstructive conduct

The Fiji Roads Authority (FRA) says Patterson Brothers Shipping Ltd has committed an offence by obstructing the berthing of a Goundar Shipping Services ship at the Ellington Wharf in Rakiraki. The Lomaiviti Princess VI could not start its Ellington-Nabouwalu service yesterday because Patterson Brothers Shipping’s boat, the MV Spirit of Altruism, refused to leave port....

150th anniversary: Influenza grips Fiji

On November 18, 1918, one of The Fiji Times articles said: “As a result of the outbreak of influenza in Suva, six Fijians who contracted it have died at the Colonial Hospital.” Word was also received that seven of the dozen or so Fijians on the ship SS Atua in Sydney had died. This was...

Bus tragedy duo in custody

A BUS driver and a driver of a private car who were involved in an accident which claimed the lives of two students at Lakena, Nausori, have been further remanded in custody. The bus driver, Shalen Jattan, is charged with two counts of dangerous driving occasioning death, two counts of dangerous driving causing grievous bodily...

Man claims $14k pension withdrawn without knowledge

A MAN who claimed his retirement pension was withdrawn without his knowledge is disappointed that the Fiji National Provident Fund has not provided him with an explanation. Guruwaiya Achari claims $14,000 was withdrawn from his FNPF account in the year 2000 and he only found out when he visited the FNPF branch in the West...

Labour challenge

FIJI and other Pacific Island Countries are facing significant challenges in the labour market which mainly involves the youths. On one side of the coin, the region has very high youth unemployment rate while on the flipside there is a huge shortage of skilled people. This was revealed by Prof Satish Chand from the University...

$30.30 million revenue for local enterprise

THE Rice Company of Fiji Ltd is forecasting lower sales volume in the backdrop of overall slowdown and increased competition on the rice production front. Company chairman Gary Callaghan however said they were constantly looking for opportunities to ride the growth cycle despite increased competition locally. The company released its 2019 annual report which showed...

Bank aims to make home loans accessible for clients

THE only local bank in the country has reduced its home loan rate from 7.5 per cent to 6.99 per cent. HFC Bank’s retail banking manager Tony Ram there has been a steady growth for the past few years. He said the fixed rate for 12 months was 4.5 per cent which was very competitive...

Authorities should prioritise search, says Radrodro

GOVERNMENT authorities responsible for the welfare of children should prioritise the search for the missing 37 children, says Opposition spokeswoman on Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Salote Radrodro. She said the figure was alarming, especially for children to go missing in a country where people practically knew each other. “It must be underscored that any...

Minister explains trend

CHILDREN go missing in Fiji around the school holidays, says Defence Minister Inia Seruiratu. He said this had been a trend for a number of years. He made the comment after conducting an analysis of missing children data from 2014-2019. During the reporting period, a total of 723 people were reported missing in the country...

Cost of investigating cases is ‘astronomical’

THE cost of investigating cases of missing children is “astronomical”, says Minister for Defence Inia Seruiratu. He said a lot of time was devoted in administration and operational works related to missing children investigations. “It is no doubt astronomical in terms of man hours, cost and mobilisation of resources,” Mr Seruiratu said. He said the...

Making a difference

AFTER 28 years in the teaching field, primary schoolteacher, Inieta Benaca, called it quits last year. She was tired of the monotonous work and felt there was more she could do to make a difference. The Kocoma, Qamea native who liked to refer to herself as a mother of “half a dozen” instead of six...

Seruiratu: 37 children remain missing since 2014

A STAGGERING 37 children remain missing in Fiji from the 723 cases reported to police since 2014. This information is contained in the parliamentary answer provided by Minister for Defence, National Security and Foreign Affairs Inia Seruiratu in response to a written question that was asked by (now) suspended Opposition parliamentarian Pio Tikoduadua on August...

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