1.?GOVERNMENT WORKS WITH STAKEHOLDERS TO BETTER ADDRESS DRY SPELL -?Despite the dry weather conditions affecting most parts of the country the Ministry of Agriculture is working with various stakeholders to assess the situation.
2.?IMPROVING PRODUCTIVITY WITHIN FISHERIES AND FORESTRY SECTOR -?Enhancing and improving productivity in the Fisheries and Forestry sector will be one of the key areas which the Ministry is adamant to improve in the next four years.
3.?HOMES DAMAGED BY TC EVANS COMPLETED IN MACUATA, CAKAUDROVE PROVINCE -?Homes damaged by Tropical Cyclone Evan in 2012 in the Macuata and Cakaudrove province have been completed through government?s rehabilitation project in the Northern Division.
4.?WOMEN MEET TO STRENGTHEN NETWORK -?Talks on building a self-reliant and resilient women?s group was held during the Fiji Women?s Federation (FWF) quarterly advisory council meeting today.
5.?YOUNG WOMEN CHALLENGED TO REALISE THEIR POTENTIONAL -?Government will continue to support empowerment programs and engage very closely with women?s groups through income generating initiatives.
6.?NEW MINISTER VISITS JUVENILE REHABILITATION CENTRE -?Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation will strengthen its efforts in empowering young juveniles who enter the Juvenile Rehabilitation and Development Centre in Samabula.
7.?WORLD MARITIME DAY CELEBRATIONS IN LABASA -?The World Maritime Day celebration in Labasa in the Northern Division ended with great support and acknowledgement from the stakeholders and the general public.
1.?GOVERNMENT WORKS WITH STAKEHOLDERS TO BETTER ADDRESS DRY SPELL
Despite the dry weather conditions affecting most parts of the country the Ministry of Agriculture is working with various stakeholders to assess the situation.
Minister for Agriculture, Rural Development and National Disaster Management Inia Seruiratu said a team from the ministry organised the tour last week to visit places in the Central and Western divisions to assess the situation.
?We are looking at options on the necessary steps that will be taken and awaiting advice from the Meteorological office on the weather situation,? Minister Seruiratu said.
?We will be meeting with the various stakeholders and the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport regarding the water crisis that is affecting most parts of the country,? he said.
Minister Seruiratu highlighted that considering governments steps in reducing import bill with the current dry spell, we will need to implement mitigating plans for the future.
?Our focus for now will be reducing and managing risks to be able to minimise the effects of dry season for our farmers,? he added.
With the contingency plan already in place, Minister Seruiratu is adamant that consultations with various agencies will be able to mitigate and manage such risks in future.
2.?IMPROVING PRODUCTIVITY WITHIN FISHERIES AND FORESTRY SECTOR
Enhancing and improving productivity in the Fisheries and Forestry sector will be one of the key areas which the Ministry is adamant to improve in the next four years.
This was highlighted by the newly appointed Minister for Fisheries and Forest Osea Naiqamu at the official welcoming ceremony held this morning.
?With this the department of Fisheries is responsible for the formulation and implementation of policies that promote best practice (equating conservation and utilization), that will ensure a prosperous and enhanced fisheries sector,? Mr Naiqamu said.
?We need to improve?coordination through consultation and partnership with resource owners, communities, private sector, government agencies, Non-Governmental Organisations, regional and international agencies,? he said.
Fisheries and Forest permanent secretary, Inoke Wainiqolo also provided a brief update on the various capital projects that is currently underway and the various functions of the ministry.
With the future plans set to improve the two economic sectors, Minister Naiqamu is confident of ensuring that our future generation will inherit a prosperous fisheries and forestry sector.
3.?HOMES DAMAGED BY TC EVANS COMPLETED IN MACUATA, CAKAUDROVE PROVINCE
Homes damaged by Tropical Cyclone Evan in 2012 in the Macuata and Cakaudrove province have been completed through government?s rehabilitation project in the Northern Division.
Six houses were completed in Cakaudrove Province while 13 houses have been completed in Macuata.
Monitored by the Commissioner Northern?s Office, Cakaudrove Provincial Administrator Inoke Roko said the damaged homes?have been completed in Cakaudrove and the affected families are happy.
Cakaudrove Sepo Cagilaba, 52, of Vunivesi village in Cakaudrove who was affected by TC Evan said he greatly acknowledged the completion of his home?and the support from government.
“When my home?was damaged I thought no one will help me, I thought government had forgotten me,” Mr Cagilaba said.
He said there are seven members in his family and their new home?has brought them closer to schools and better roads.
Meanwhile, 17 homes in the Bua province are to be completed from a total of 52 homes damaged.
The total cost for this project was $15,000 per home for all the three provinces.
4.?WOMEN MEET TO STRENGTHEN NETWORK
Talks on building a self-reliant and resilient women?s group was held during the Fiji Women?s Federation (FWF) quarterly advisory council meeting today.
Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Ms Rosy Sofia Akbar opened the Fiji Women?s Federation advisory committee meeting with views to strengthen the work of the Ministry with the women?s group to tackle the syndrome of hand-out and dependence around Fiji.
The committee members of the FWF run various income generating projects for women?s group such as sewing machine projects, women resource centre and women?s sexual reproductive health training in informal settlements within the greater Suva area.
The Minister applauded the committee members on their generosity in reaching out to assist groups outside their own domain of influence.
Ms Akbar highlighted that the group?s work is in line with the government?s core value of self-reliance.
?Self-reliance believes that no-one owes us a living but with God?s blessing, each human can utilise their talent and gifts to make a living for themselves and their families,? Ms Akbar said.
?I believe as woman we must believe in self-reliance as the strength of our family lies with us women and that is why women power is needed to move the society forward.?
She urged the members to work together to build strong, resilient, assertive and industrious women, who will utilize their talents and the rich natural resources to build wealth and improve livelihoods.
5.?YOUNG WOMEN CHALLENGED TO REALISE THEIR POTENTIONAL
Government will continue to support empowerment programs and engage very closely with women?s groups through income generating initiatives.
This was relayed by the Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Rosy Sofia Akbar at the launch of the relief society and young women?s show held at the Latter Day Saints church in Suva today.
Ms Akbar challenged mothers and young women of today to realise there true potential in order to achieve their dreams and be successful in life.
?It is crucial to always remind ourselves that we are unique, strong efficient, interdependent and have potential to be agents of positive change in our respective homes, communities and in the nation as a whole,? Minister Akbar said.
?Through this shows you will get an opportunity to realise and recognise your capabilities and skills to empower yourself and continue to improve livelihoods,? Minister Akbar said.
Tupou Tulavatu of Wailoku this show will allow young women to showcase their talents in crafting and sewing.
?We need to encourage more young women in our own societies to learn crafting and sewing skills especially if they are unemployed at least they are able to earn a living from selling their products,? she said.
For 16-year- old Foana Balenaveikau said she is grateful to the church and government for this sort of initiatives which will allow young women to excel in their communities.
?I must commend government for supporting empowerment programs in these way women have the ability to be agents of change in their families, communities and the country,? she said.
The event is the annual event organised by the Latter Day Saints church.
6.?NEW MINISTER VISITS JUVENILE REHABILITATION CENTRE
Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation will strengthen its efforts in empowering young juveniles who enter the Juvenile Rehabilitation and Development Centre in Samabula.
This was highlighted by the Minister for Women, Ms Rosy Akbar at the welcoming ceremony by the staff of the ministry last week.
Ms Akbar said that it is important to empower the young people especially the juveniles in becoming better people once they are released from rehabilitation centers.
?The aim of our ministry is to ensure that when you (juveniles) enter such centers, we want you to go back being a better person and give back to the community, what the community is giving to you now.
?This ministry will continue working to better the lives of juveniles offenders and we would love to remove the term of juvenile offenders from those who are placed under this institution and we want you to go back to go back to the society and become responsible citizens and give back to the society what we expect from young people,? Ms Akbar said.
Ms Akbar urged the juveniles in the centre to learn as much as possible to be well equipped in life with a skill and be self-reliant.
?My simple message for those under care here is for you to think about every action that you take in life and every action comes with a consequence.
?So whichever period of time you spend here, please take heed of the lessons taught here and the skills and become more responsible.
?Our society has a place for you and I am particularly inspired by the word self-reliant. Learn skills that are going to help you earn a living so that you do not re-offend again,? she added.
7.?WORLD MARITIME DAY CELEBRATIONS IN LABASA
The World Maritime Day celebration in Labasa in the Northern Division ended with great support and acknowledgement from the stakeholders and the general public.
Permanent secretary for Infrastructure and Transport, Francis Kean said the Maritime Safety Authority of Fiji (MSAF) organized a dynamic and vibrant program.
Closing the event last week Tui Macuata Ratu Wiliame Katonivere said the celebration is significant and very relevant for the North.
?I believe that as we emerge into the world stage, re-engaging with the International Community, we must be strong in Best Maritime Practices, harbouring confidence with investors and draw in more foreign partners into the sector?
?For us in the North, maritime transport is an integral part of our life?.
He added that Fiji is moving into a new and exciting era, an era of accelerated progress, and increased awareness, an era of inclusive participation and fast-tracked development.