MINISTRY OF INFORMATION FIJI NEWS SUMMARY 4:00PM 01/05/13

CAPTION:?Tagitagi residents at the opening of the?reservoir.

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1.?????PRESIDENT OFFICIATES AT THE GROUND-BREAKING CEREMONY FOR STAFF QUARTERS?- His Excellency the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau this morning officiated at the ground-breaking ceremony for the new quarters for staff who work in the Office of the President.

 

2.?????PM CONGRATULATES REPUBLIC OF MARSHALL ISLANDS?- PRIME Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has extended Fiji?s well wishes to the Government and People of the Marshall Islands as they commemorate a milestone in the nation?s political history.

 

3.?????DIPLOMATS TO CONNECT PUBLIC TO WORLD STAGE?- WITH the emergence of public diplomacy, envoys have become mediators and communicators of international relations between the countries and the public.

 

4.?????LANDS MINISTRY BEGINS ROADSHOW FOR CENTRAL DIVISION?- The Permanent Secretary for Lands & Mineral Resources, Mr Tevita Boseiwaqa is encouraging state land lessees to visit its Ministerial Road show at the following locations:

 

5.?????OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT RECEIVES TOP TEN OHS AWARDS?- The Office of the President has been recognised for being among the top ten organizations in Fiji with the best occupational health and safety workplace management system.

 

6.?????2000 RURAL RESIDENTS RECEIVE WATER?-?Tagitagi residents on the outskirts of Tavua no longer experience low water pressure after the opening of a new reservoir by the Water Authority of Fiji this week.

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1 -?PRESIDENT OFFICIATES AT THE GROUND-BREAKING CEREMONY FOR STAFF QUARTERS

 

His Excellency the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau this morning officiated at the ground-breaking ceremony for the new quarters for staff who work in the Office of the President.

 

The new double-storey quarters will replace the existing quarters which were built in the 1950s. The new building is estimated to cost about $500,000 and is fully funded by Government. When completed, the quarters will house four staff and their respective families.

 

Acting Official Secretary to the President, Pene Baleinabuli, said the new building will certainly raise the standard of living for the staff and this should automatically translate into improved services to His Excellency the President.

 

He said the staff have had to use the old building for several years but this has become an occupational health and safety issue not only because the building is old, but because the married staff have had to use the building which was specifically meant for bachelors.

 

?Over the years, as many as five staff with their respective families have had to share only two bathrooms and showers and one laundry facility. It was very inconvenient.?

 

Mr Baleinabuli said this Government recognized the need to improve the living conditions for its workers and through the Ministries of Finance and Strategic Planning, Government allocated the necessary funds to build new quarters for existing staff.

 

-ENDS-

 

2?PM CONGRATULATES REPUBLIC OF MARSHALL ISLANDS

 

PRIME Minister Voreqe Bainimarama has extended Fiji?s well wishes to the Government and People of the Marshall Islands as they commemorate a milestone in the nation?s political history.

 

Prime Minister Bainimarama congratulated our Pacific island neighbours as they celebrate today the 34th?anniversary marking the signing of the nation?s constitution.

 

In a note to Marshall Island?s President, Mr Christopher Loeak, Prime Minister Bainimarama said Fiji hoped for the continued progress and prosperity between the two countries.

 

Commodore Bainimarama reassured the people of the Republic of Marshall Islands that friendly relations between the two countries will continue to prosper and strengthen in the coming years.

 

-ENDS-

 

3?DIPLOMATS TO CONNECT PUBLIC TO WORLD STAGE

 

WITH the emergence of public diplomacy, envoys have become mediators and communicators of international relations between the countries and the public.

 

Speaking to 32 civil servants at the fifth Induction Course for Diplomatic Service, the Public Service Commission permanent secretary Mr Parmesh Chand said diplomats should be able to effectively communicate and use the public relations machinery.
?The new job of diplomats is to adequately inform citizens of the host country or his/her own country about the issues being negotiated,? Mr Chand said.

 

On the need to train professionals on diplomacy, Mr Chand said diplomats need to be more specialised in their field as the political economy becomes the driving force of globalisation.

 

?We can no longer be sending officers overseas who simply fit purposes. However, we need well trained personnel on the ground in the places that matter and who are able to make difference in the course of events for Fiji and our people.?

 

He said Fiji needs alert and visionary diplomats especially in the area of conflict prevention and also to tap into new opportunities for trade, commerce, investment and development.

Another issue that these diplomats need to be well versed with is prevention and mitigation of climate change and sustainable development.

 

?We need effective diplomats who can build coalitions of different actors, namely the public, civil society, private sector and academia,? Mr Chand said.

 

?Diplomats who can lobby to drive down barriers to trade and build political relationships that support greater trade and investment for our small economies.?

 

For the first time, the training, which has civil servants from a wide cross section of Ministries, has been extended to other Pacific island countries which resulted in five participants from Kiribati and Tuvalu.

 

-ENDS-

 

4?LANDS MINISTRY BEGINS ROADSHOW FOR CENTRAL DIVISION

 

The Permanent Secretary for Lands & Mineral Resources, Mr Tevita Boseiwaqa is encouraging state land lessees to visit its Ministerial Road show at the following locations:

 

Wednesday 1st?May ??-????Valelevu Police Bure

Thursday 2nd?May????? -???Muaniweni Primary School

Friday 3rd?May?????????? -???Syria Park, Nausori.

 

?This is an opportune time? for state land lessees to raise issues on the administration of state land or their leases for that matter, to discuss the DO?s and DONT?s, to discuss what is permitted and not permitted on the land, and then look at and learn what practices could be used to ensure lease conditions are not breached.

 

?Caretakers and tenants of crown leases are also encouraged to visit the Road show and to raise issues of concern.

 

?Key to all these is to understanding of processes and term and conditions of leases to ensure better management of state land,? Mr Boseiwaqa added.

 

Yesterday, at Navua issues of concerns raised was the infiltration of sea water into the land making the land unproductive and the shortage of tractors to plough the land.

 

?Issues such as these will help us fine tune our system and processes as we are now implementing our draft SOP on state land a administration which will be finalized by the end of the year,? Mr Boseiwaqa emphasised.

 

The Ministry held similar road show in the Western Division from the 4th?-8th?of Feb and from the 28th?of Feb ? 4th?of March. A similar road show is also planned for the Northern Division which will be held in the 3rd?quarter of the year.

 

-ENDS-

 

5?OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT RECEIVES TOP TEN OHS AWARDS

 

The Office of the President has been recognised for being among the top ten organizations in Fiji with the best occupational health and safety workplace management system.

 

The award was handed to the Office of the President during the 2013 World Day for Safety and Health at Work organized by the Ministry of Labour together with the International Labour Organization and the Fiji Employers Federation.

 

Acting Official Secretary to the President, Pene Baleinabuli, said the award is a reflection of the commitment by His Excellency the President and the staff of the Office of the President in promoting a conducive environment for the staff, for the visitors to Government House including many local and foreign dignitaries, and for the members of the public.

 

He said that the President, His Excellency Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, is a strong advocate of health and safety for the people of Fiji.

 

?This is perhaps best reflected in the President?s various activities including but not limited to his role as Fiji?s Special representative for HIV and AIDS. In this capacity, the President has visited over 60 secondary schools around the country and personally spoken with over 37,000 students and teachers on the need for them to keep safe from HIV and AIDS of which there is no medical cure. The President intends to continue his visitations to all the remaining secondary schools in 2013. In addition to this, the President maintains a strict routine visiting the gym or doing his walks almost on a daily basis.?

 

Mr Baleinabuli thanked the Ministry of Labour, Industrial Relations and Employment for recognizing the efforts of His Excellency the President and the Office of the President.

 

He said the Office of the President will continue to work towards improving its management system in-line with Government?s overarching reform objectives.

 

-ENDS-

6?2000 RURAL RESIDENTS RECEIVE WATER

Tagitagi residents on the outskirts of Tavua no longer experience low water pressure after the opening of a new reservoir by the Water Authority of Fiji this week.

The opening the reservoir will benefit close to the 2000 residents that live along the greater Tagitagi area along the Kings Highway.

WAF chief executive officer Opetaia Ravai said the opening of the reservoir highlighted Government?s vision to have clean water accessible to every Fijian household.

?It is now the right of every citizen to have access to clean tap water and this is also stipulated in the Bill of Rights in the Draft Constitution,? he said.

?We are here to assist you in any way we can but WAF is happy to Commission this reservoir in fulfilling Government?s vision in providing clean water to every Fijian.?

The opening also marked an end to 11 year of wait for Tagitagi residents who had a reservoir but no proper water supply ? sometimes only filling their taps for two, three hours a day.

?It has been 11 years since this reservoir was built but had never been used and we are happy that it is now being able to put to full use under this government,? Mr Ravai said.

Local resident Semi Koroi thanked WAF and the government in assisting people in the rural areas have access to basic infrastructure and services.

?We thank the Government for its vision in providing the basic infrastructure in roads, water and electricity to the rural communities,? Mr Koroi said.

?This will go a long way for the farming community of Tavua.?

-ENDS-