MINISTRY OF INFORMATION FIJI NEWS SUMMARY 5.00PM 22/01/13

CAPTON: Participants at the climate change workshop this morning.

1.?????SOLOMON ISLANS REAFFIRMS SUPPORT TO FIJI?S CONSTITUTION REFORMS?- The Government of the Solomon Islands has reaffirmed its position on supporting electoral reforms implemented by the Fijian Government.

 

2.?????EMIRATES OFFERS MEDICAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES?- The Ministry of Labour has released vacancies for medical professionals wishing to take on positions in the United Arab Emirates.

 

3.?????FIJI NEEDS TO STRENGTHEN DISASTER RESILIENT COMMUNITIES?- The zero death toll from the recent cyclone demonstrates the resilience by Fijians and the change in mindset towards cyclones and natural disasters.

 

4.??????GOVERNMENT JOINS CHURCH TO ADDRESS POVERTY IN NORTH?-?Government’s commitment and drive to alleviate poverty in the northern division has led to the construction of a new sewing centre in Savusavu.

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1?SOLOMON ISLANS REAFFIRMS SUPPORT TO FIJI?S CONSTITUTION REFORMS

 

The Government of the Solomon Islands has reaffirmed its position on supporting electoral reforms implemented by the Fijian Government.

 

At a recent meeting between Fiji?s foreign minister Ratu Inoke Kubuabola and the Honorable Prime Minister of the Solomon Islands Hon. Gordon Darcy Lilo, both parties discussed Fiji?s progress towards achieving electoral reforms.

 

Minister Kubuabola visited the Solomon Islands and paid a courtesy call to Prime Minister Lilo and updated on a number of issues. At the same time, the Minister was able to convey Fiji?s recognition of the enduring support of the Government of the Solomon Islands towards Fiji?s Roadmap to Parliamentary Democracy and our appreciation for Solomon Islands vigorous support towards Fiji.

 

In doing so, Minister Kubuabola also provided an outline of the recent developments on Fiji?s new Constitution, confirming that following the successful completion of national consultations, a Draft Constitution has been tabled to His Excellency the President of Fiji. Minister Kubuabola specified that whilst the merits of such a Draft Constitution are being acknowledged, there were certain critical elements that required further discourse and analysis, such as the size of Parliament relative to the size of Fiji?s population, and the notion of a largely unelected national people’s assembly comprised principally of non government organisations sitting alongside the elected Parliament. These are the possible amendments that the Constituent Assembly would be considering, to the Draft Constitution, as opposed to what activists are deliberately interpreting to be ?A New Draft Constitution?. Minister Kubuabola assured PM Lilo that the New Constitution would be ready by March this year.

 

The Hon Prime Minister Lilo thanked Minister Kubuabola for these clarifications on recent political developments in Fiji, commending the manner in which Fiji has meanwhile conducted herself on the international front. He conveyed his confidence that Fiji would be meticulously monitoring the undertakings of the Constituent Assembly over the next month to ensure that the crux of the New Constitution shall enshrine issues that are fundamental to Democracy, and reiterated his support and the support of the Government of the Solomon Islands for Fiji?s efforts towards Parliamentary Elections in 2014.

 

The Hon Prime Minister Lilo also expressed his appreciation to the Hon Prime Minister of Fiji, Voreqe Bainimarama, for his exemplary leadership and his congratulations for Fiji?s recent assumption of the Chairmanship of the Group of 77 + China in 2013.

 

Minister Kubuabola took the opportunity to also discuss with the Hon Prime Minister Lilo the Fiji Volunteer Scheme, recognising that the Solomon Islands was amongst the first Pacific Islands to have signed the Development Cooperation MOU with Fiji in 2010.? The Hon PM Lilo thanked the Government of Fiji for this Scheme, accepting the proposal by Minister Kubuabola for the surplus Solomon Islands graduate doctors from Cuba being considered for deployment to Fiji under the Scheme.

 

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2?EMIRATES OFFERS MEDICAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES

 

The Ministry of Labour has released vacancies for medical professionals wishing to take on positions in the United Arab Emirates.

 

The positions range from nurses to pharmacists and each position requires at least two years of work experience.

 

Fiji citizens with relevant qualifications, experience and current practicing certificates and are able to work in a cross cultural and dynamic environment are encouraged to apply.

 

Those wishing to apply are required to have a well detailed curriculum vitae with 3 referees, copies of educational and experience certificates and a current passport photo and are to submit by mail, email or hand delivered no later than 4th?February 2013 to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment, Level 4, Civic House, Suva. The Minister for Labour Jone Usumate will be updating media outlets tomorrow on this latest development.

 

For additional information on each job requirement, interested applicants may visit?www.nec.org.fj?orwww.labour.gov.fj

 

(Attached ? Vacancy listings attached)

 

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3?FIJI NEEDS TO STRENGTHEN DISASTER RESILIENT COMMUNITIES

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The zero death toll from the recent cyclone demonstrates the resilience by Fijians and the change in mindset towards cyclones and natural disasters.

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Minister for Local Government, Urban Development, Housing and Environment Samuela Saumatua while officiating at Pacific Islands Climate Services Workshop today challenged participants to work out plan on how stakeholders can address climate change issues in the Pacific.

 

?With the input provide by the speakers and participants we will be able provide valuable insights on how climate and weather forecasting can help our nation and communities prepare for the considerable challenges of the next decade and century,? the Minister said.

 

?We are also reaching out to other stakeholders to see how we can raise to another level on preparedness to improve resilience,? Colonel Saumatua said.

 

He said that forums like the one held today allows government to improve its position in addressing climate change issues.

 

Meanwhile, the University of the South Pacific acting vice chancellor Doctor Esther Williams said this forum will provide a platform for the pacific to learn more about climate change.

 

?We need more information on climate change programs and how we can improve in disseminating information to the people,? Dr Williams said.

 

Dr Williams also highlighted that the University has included climates change programs?in their strategic plan to better address this issues at tertiary level.

 

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4?GOVERNMENT JOINS CHURCH TO ADDRESS POVERTY IN NORTH

 

Government’s commitment and drive to alleviate poverty in the northern division has led to the construction of a new sewing centre in Savusavu.

 

The sewing centre is a joint project between the Ministry of Women and Assembly of God (AOG) Church in Savusavu. The new building has been constructed with a funding of $10,000 from government along with the donation of 4 sewing machines from the women’s ministry and Courts Fiji Limited.

 

The sewing centre located in Nakama, Savusavu was opened last week by the Minister for Social Welfare, Women and Poverty Alleviation Dr Jiko Luveni. The idea of the centre was initiated by the Minister during one of her visits to Savusavu last year.

 

Dr Luveni said the new sewing centre would be a source of income generating and provide skills training for Savusavu women.

 

“Women play a key role in poverty alleviation. When women earn income, it is invested in improving the livelihood of their families. Through sewing skills, women can save money as well as start small tailoring business as a source of income generating. This will empower them to contribute towards their household income and alleviate poverty,” she said.

 

The Minister said the vision for her ministry is to ensure that all the villages in Fiji should have 2 sewing machines each.

 

“In the last 3 years my Ministry has distributed over 1900 sewing machines and for some women groups there are some 100 plus members in which case 2 sewing machines will not be enough. We still have about 300 villages and women groups without sewing machines. There are 600 sewing machines that have arrived on our shores and by June this year the distribution is to be completed.”

 

Dr Luveni has encouraged Savusavu women to utilise the training opportunities available at the sewing training centre.

 

“The ultimate goal is to help you develop your sewing skills and see that you translate these skills into monetary gains for your families. This centre is a source of hope, inspiration for women who are in search of opportunities to improve their livelihood. I thank Courts Fiji Limited and Reverend Vasu for their continued partnership in seeing successful completion of this project,” she added.

 

The Church pastor Reverend Vasu Lakhan acknowledged the government for reaching out to the women in Savusavu.

 

“I must praise this government for what has been promised in the years has been fulfilled by this government and I am proud that we are looked well by this government. We can see that the Minister is here, the focus of the government is to listen to the people and provide services and under the leadership of the Bainimarama government, we have witnessed a lot of achievements that have improved the lives of poor people.

 

“It is through government’s vision to bring equality and unity among the people that today we can all proudly identify ourselves as Fijians. The sewing centre is a much-awaited development in Savusavu, it will not only benefit the women but also provide economic opportunities to unemployed youths in Savusavu. The project has been possible through the Dr Luveni’s vision to assist the women in Fiji,” Reverend Vasu said.

 

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