1. COMMANDER PAYS RESPECTS AT FIJIAN WAR MEMORIAL SITE – The Commanding Officer of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Hospital Ship “PEACE ARK” paid his respects at Fiji’s war memorial site today.
2. RFMF WILL SUPPORT ELECTED GOVERNMENT – The Republic of Fiji Military Forces will support the elected Government and accept the outcome of the 2014 General Election.
3. RFMF WILL SUPPORT ELECTED GOVERNMENT – The Republic of Fiji Military Forces will support the elected Government and accept the outcome of the 2014 General Election.
4. RA TIKINA WATER PROJECT TO COMPLETE BY OCTOBER – More than 50,000 Fijians living in the rural areas of Ra province will get tapped water in their homes for the first time by the end of October.
5. RA TIKINA WATER PROJECT TO COMPLETE BY OCTOBER – More than 50,000 Fijians living in the rural areas of Ra province will get tapped water in their homes for the first time by the end of October.
6. RA TIKINA WATER PROJECT TO COMPLETE BY OCTOBER – More than 50,000 Fijians living in the rural areas of Ra province will get tapped water in their homes for the first time by the end of October.
7. MINISTRY CALLS FOR BALANCED APPROACH TO TERM THREE – The Ministry of Education, National Heritage, Culture and Arts acting permanent secretary Basundra Kumar has reminded teachers and students on the need to adopt a balanced approach to their school work in this final term of the 2014 academic year.
8. NORTH LOOKS FORWARD TO ELECTIONS – With 20 days to go before the September 17 General Election, the Acting Commissioner Northern Alipate Bolalevu has urged voters in the North to know their polling venue and how to vote.
9. FNSC DISTRIBUTION OF FUNDS TO DEVELOP SPORTS IN FIJI – The Fijian Government’s plan to assist sporting bodies so they can produce top class athletes is made possible by the Sports Grants Assistance funding and rural outreach programmes.
1. COMMANDER PAYS RESPECTS AT FIJIAN WAR MEMORIAL SITE
The Commanding Officer of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Hospital Ship “PEACE ARK” paid his respects at Fiji’s war memorial site today.
Deputy Commander of the East Fleet Rear Admiral Shen Hao led a delegation to the site where he laid his wreath in respect of Fijian fallen troops.
Rear Admiral Hao later met with the Minister for Defence, National Security and Immigration Joketani Cokanasiga and senior officials from various Government agencies.
The medical ship, which has been in the country since last week, has been visited by hundreds of Fijians visiting daily for consultations and treatment. A medical team from the ship left for Kadavu today to provide essential medical services for Fijians living there.
Separate medical teams were dispatched to Navua Hospital, Valelevu Hospital and the Colonial War Memorial Hospital
2. RFMF WILL SUPPORT ELECTED GOVERNMENT
The Republic of Fiji Military Forces will support the elected Government and accept the outcome of the 2014 General Election.
Speaking at the RFMF Commander’s parade this morning, for military personnel who have just returned from the United Nations Disengagement of Force mission in Golan Heights, RFMF Commander, Brigadier General Mosese Tikoitoga urged the 196 officers to remain apolitical at all times.
“We should not be involved in any political party activities nor should we be participating in any political party activities, but rather we should remain apolitical for the mere fact that we should be ready to accept the role of the custodian of any Government that comes into power after the election,” Brigadier General Tikoitoga said.
“We can only do that if we remain neutral in preparation prior to the election, remain neutral during the election and accept the result of the election and subject ourselves to the Government that comes into power after the elections.”
The RFMF Commander said the RFMF would not favour any individual or political party and reminded those who had not read the constitution to familiarise themselves with the document.
“We will take our role in the constitution seriously and we will continue to uphold that role for the sake of upholding stability and maintaining law and order in our nation,” Brigadier General Tikoitoga said.
Fiji remains the largest contingent in Syria with over 400 troops on the ground.
3. WOMEN URGED TO BE ‘AGENTS OF CHANGE’
Members of the Dorcas Welfare Society in Naveiwakau, Nasinu were urged to be ‘agents of change’ in their respective communities.
Minister for Women, Social Welfare and Poverty Alleviation Dr Jiko Luveni met with the 40-member women’s group today and provided them with first-hand information about various assistance programmes by the ministry.
Dr Luveni, in her first visit, thanked the group for the work it does in assisting disadvantaged families and individuals in society.
“I am trying to reach out to women’s groups in the semi-urban areas, which have been missed out from our programmes of assistance. This is why I readily accepted the invitation from them. I would like to commend them for their mandates because they collectively raise resources that they use to help the disadvantaged people in our country,” Dr Luveni said.
The minister outlined to the women correct procedures to access the various services provided by her ministry so they could reach out to those in need of government assistance.
“My main message to them is that because they reach out to people in need, I wanted to describe to them the programme of assistance by my ministry. If they come across people who need assistance and who qualify, then they could also provide them with the right information,” Dr Luveni said.
“This women’s group and the Ministry of Women can work in close partnership to reach people in need of our assistance, especially those who are not aware of how and where to access these assistance.”
Economic empowerment is a priority for the ministry and to portray this, Dr Luveni donated two sewing machines to Dorcas Welfare Society.
“I also provided clarification on the Social Pension and Poverty Benefit schemes. The women here request our assistance in the construction of a women’s resource centre so they could have a centre for their empowerment programme,” Minister Luveni said.
“We have provided them with sewing machines so they can make clothes to distribute to the needy, make clothes for themselves or even those who are not skilled in tailoring, can learn how to sew clothes and alleviate poverty from their own homes first before they reach out to the community.”
Dorcas Welfare Society president, 68-year-old Adi Reki Raitekiteki said they were encouraged by the minister’s timely visit.
“The minister talked to us about the various welfare programmes and achievements of her ministry. This is the first time for the minister to come and speak to us. We invited her recently and she made a point of meeting us today, for which we all are very thankful,” Mrs Raitekiteki said.
Vani Dususu Wilikibau, 34, said they shared a common vision with the Ministry for Women and Social Welfare, which was to assist the less fortunate in the country.
“We help those who face financial difficulties, who are unable to afford meals and we buy stuff for them,” Mrs Wilikibau said.
“We go as a group and visit needy families, such as those in HART homes and St Christopher’s Home.
“We are motivated by Dr Luveni’s visit to us today. The information shared will enable us to better inform those in need of assistance. We must continue impacting the lives of the needy in a positive way because we are the ‘agents of change.”
4. RA TIKINA WATER PROJECT TO COMPLETE BY OCTOBER
More than 50,000 Fijians living in the rural areas of Ra province will get tapped water in their homes for the first time by the end of October.
This will be through the government-funded Ra Tikina water project.
Acting Commissioner Western Luke Moroivalu says once the project is completed, decades of drinking water from wells and rivers will become a worry of the past for these residents.
“Water is a necessity for life and Ra is a big area, however they have never had safe drinking water running in their taps. Some of them have been without tap water for more than 100 years,” Mr Moroivalu said.
“Government has prioritised water and electricity for Fijians in rural areas and Ra has been neglected for so many years because of the large land mass, but before the end of this year, they too should be able to access clean safe drinking water in their taps.”
Villages and settlements that will benefit from this project include the island of Malake, Naria, Douciu, Nanukuloa and Dadamu, Ra High School and Vunikavikaloa.
“As we speak, the mains at Malake are almost 50 per cent complete and pipes are on the ground,” Mr Moroivalu said.
“The extension of mains in Naria is complete and the Water Authority of Fiji is testing the pressure on pipes.”
Pipe laying in Douciu is progressing well and will be completed by the end of September.
The Nanukuloa/Dadamu Rural Scheme is in need of a new dam, which is now being built.
Ra High School Rural Scheme is completed and work included the construction of a new dam, pipe laying, and the provisions of tanks while the Vunikavikaloa Settlement Rural Scheme is progressing well.
Mr Moroivalu said works in the project, which cost $800,000, includes the installation of air valves and washouts, final interconnections, and household connections.
5. NATIONAL ARCHIVES SUCCESSFUL OUTREACH PROGRAMS
The National Archives of Fiji is gaining recognition through its outreach programmes and the social networking platform.
National Archives director Opeta Atalifo said the department, as keeper of Fiji’s historical archival records, continued to fulfill government directives to take services to rural areas.
“Outreach and public awareness continues to be a main focus and priority for the National Archives of Fij,” Mr. Atalifo said.
“We have had 11 outreach programmes so far, our targeted is 12 for the year, so we are almost there. The latest have been at the USP Open Day and the Methodist Church Conference.
Mr Atalifo said the past outreach programmes in the hinterlands were widely appreciated and positively received by the people in which records were taken pertaining to the place visited.
“We have been to the hinterlands of Vanua Levu, Wainikoro, Laselevu, and Natuva, Naitasiri. Where the people said that we were the first big government contingent to visit them since their school was built in 1957,” the director said.
“The audience was appreciative and they soaked up all the information we had for them. So we take tribal records and land information, so people have access to archival records and historical records that directly relate to them.”
The other medium the National Archives uses is the Facebook page, which has become popular with compliments and increased “Likes” to the page.
Mr Atalifo outlined the progress of the Digital Continuity Unit, which continues to catalogue over 2000 hours of historical audiovisual footage with over 40 per cent completion.
“Black and white there is at least 106,000 photos and they have already sorted and cleaned, catalogued and digitised over 30,000 of those and we are getting a lot of requests,” he said.
National Archives of Fiji is working with the Ministry of Information’s, Film and Television Unit for the production of the “Back in Time” documentary with the government’s funding of $1m to clean, salvage and digitise and historical audio visual footage.
6. MINISTRY CELEBRATES BIRTHDAY AND HONORS LONG SERVICE
The Ministry of Education, National Heritage, Culture and Arts celebrated the 79th birthday of its Minister, Ambassador Dr Filipe Bole, on Monday, August 25.
The plaque which commemorated his long years of service was presented to him by his incumbent permanent secretary Basundra Kumar.
“It is a privilege for me to present this plaque on behalf of the ministry symbolising our celebration of your 79th birthday and honouring your long service and invaluable contributions to the Ministry of Education,” Mrs Kumar said.
7. MINISTRY CALLS FOR BALANCED APPROACH TO TERM THREE
The Ministry of Education, National Heritage, Culture and Arts acting permanent secretary Basundra Kumar has reminded teachers and students on the need to adopt a balanced approach to their school work in this final term of the 2014 academic year.
“While we embrace the sporting talents and creative skills of our students in extra-curricular activities, we must ensure our academic priorities are not compromised,” Mrs Kumar said.
“Now that most sporting activities have ceased, it is imperative that teachers and students prepare academically for the most important school term of the year.
“This is in line with the mission of the ministry on providing a holistic and empowering education system.
“This term is important academically because our children in Year 12 and Year 13 will be sitting their external examinations and I wish all teachers, students and parents all the best in their preparation for the final term.”
The schools open for Term 3 on Monday, September 1 for the staff meeting and all classes begin on Tuesday, September 2.
8. NORTH LOOKS FORWARD TO ELECTIONS
With 20 days to go before the September 17 General Election, the Acting Commissioner Northern Alipate Bolalevu has urged voters in the North to know their polling venue and how to vote.
“This year the nation has made great stride towards the return to parliamentary democracy,” Mr Bolalevu said.
On September 6 last year, his Excellency the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau, following a national consultation formally gave his assent to the 2013 Constitution, the Supreme Court of Law that will lead us to elections day on September 17.
“My advice to people of the North, who have registered for elections, is to cast your vote on this day,” Mr Bolalevu said.
“Each individual’s vote will be counted for Fiji’s future”.
Kamlesh Kumar, 42, of Naduna in Labasa said the elections would determine where Fiji stood and how the nation will progress.
“We need to move forward and this election is one that everyone is excited about,” Mr Kumar said.
9. FNSC DISTRIBUTION OF FUNDS TO DEVELOP SPORTS IN FIJI
The Fijian Government’s plan to assist sporting bodies so they can produce top class athletes is made possible by the Sports Grants Assistance funding and rural outreach programmes.
More than $1.1million was received this year by the Fiji National Sports Commission (FNSC) for the hosting of sports tournaments, overseas sporting tours, short term experts and sports scholarships.
Commission chairman Peter Mazey said funds were distributed to sports bodies under its umbrella
“Sporting federations in Fiji received funding of $500,000 this year for sporting tournaments and overseas sporting tours. An allocation of $200,000 was made for the various sports,” Mr Mazey said.
The commission distributed $200,000 for short term visiting experts who performed coaching clinics and programmes for various sports development including basketball, karate, netball swimming and others.
Sports scholarships have been awarded in archery, karate, surfing, table tennis, tennis and yachting in overseas countries namely, Korea, Australia, Rarotonga and New Mexico. There was a budget allocation of $200,000.
FNSC development manager Giles Smith said outreach programmes organized by the commission had been a great success with overwhelming response.
“The outreach programmes are coming to an end with the final one planned for Taveuni in September and so far the response has been great,” Mr Smith said.
“We have witnessed the revival of sports associations in areas that have been dormant because of administration and lack of funding,” Mr Smith said.
Revived associations are the Bua Rugby Union and the Bua Netball Association with the establishment of the Rugby League next. The Namara Boxing Club in Ra along with the Nalawa Netball Association and the Burebasaga Boxing Club in Rewa has been revived.
The schools’ sports outreach programme has been successful with the “Educate the Educators” programme throughout the year with 67 schools, more than 8000 participants and more requests from other schools
The commission confirmed that 14,824 participants in the country have benefitted from their programmes.