1. FIJIAN PRESIDENT RECEIVES THE NEW ENVOY FOR BANGLADESH TO FIJI – HIS Excellency the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau today received the credential of the new non-resident High Commissioner of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh to Fiji, His Excellency Kazi Imtiaz Hossain.
2. Agencies meet for sugar industry – An inclusive meeting of major government agencies will begin tomorrow in Suva to chart the way forward for the sugar industry.
3. NEW NURSING STATION TO BENEFIT MALAKE WOMEN – The establishment of a new nursing station on Malake island in the Ra province will benefit the residents living there, especially the women who often face difficulties travelling to health facilities in the province.
4. Youth told to utilise land, don’t wait for assistance – Government has urged the youth of Naitasiri to look at the idle land in their province as a source of income.
5. NEW AGREEMENT SIGNED TO ADDRESS RHEUMATIC TREATMENT FOR YOUNG FIJIANS – The Ministry of Health and Medical Services signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) today with Cure Kids New Zealand to strengthen all aspects of acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease (RHD) prevention, detection and management at a national level.
6. Social Welfare recipients equipped with tools to generate income – Social welfare recipients in the central division were today presented with equipment to assist them to generate income.
1 FIJIAN PRESIDENT RECEIVES THE NEW ENVOY FOR BANGLADESH TO FIJI
HIS Excellency the President Ratu Epeli Nailatikau today received the credential of the new non-resident High Commissioner of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh to Fiji, His Excellency Kazi Imtiaz Hossain.
High Commissioner Hossain presented his credential to the Fijian head of State at Government House.
The new envoy will be based in Canberra, Australia and is also accredited to other Pacific Island countries including Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea.
Prior to his current appointment, Mr Hossain was the ambassador to the Kingdom of Thailand, was concurrently accredited to the Kingdom of Cambodia and Permanent Representative of Bangladesh to UNESCAP.
The High Commissioner completed his bachelors and masters in accounting from the Dhaka University and Diploma in International Relations and Diplomacy – Institute Internationale d’Administration Public.
Mr Hossain has undertaken various courses in French including a training programme in France to improve his level of proficiency in the language.
He has also undertaken a Specialized Foreign Service Course from the Bangladesh Administration Training Academy, Shabagh, Dhaka.
The career diplomat began his tenure in Foreign Service at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in People’s Republic of Bangladesh in 1989 and quickly went up the ranks to serve at various Bangladeshi missions abroad.
Mr Hossain has served as a representative of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh in various capacities in countries including the United States of America, India, Switzerland and China.
2 Agencies meet for sugar industry
An inclusive meeting of major government agencies will begin tomorrow in Suva to chart the way forward for the sugar industry.
This is part of Government’s aim to include input from other arms of government towards the development of Fiji’s sugar industry.
Director Sugar Viliame Gucake said the workshop, which used to be limited only to sugar stakeholders in the past will now have a new bearing.
“The Minister for Sugar who is also the Prime Minister wants other agencies to have an input in the industry and assist sugar stakeholders chart a way forward,” Mr Gucake said.
“With a vision to make the sugar industry an inclusive sector, inputs from non – sugar stakeholders such as the Reserve Bank of Fiji (RBF), Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority (FRCA), Department of Energy and others is very important as the industry begins to post record production levels.”
Mr Gucake said with Fiji Sugar Corporation (FSC) now diversifying and adding other products to supplement sugar, it was important to ensure that the industry takes all views from other sectors in its goal to make the industry a major player in contributing towards the nation’s gross domestic product.
“The Sugar industry is a critical sector and it is always right to get a greater buy from our other stakeholders in the industry going forward,” Mr Gucake said.
The Prime Minister and Minister for Sugar Hon. Voreqe Bainimarama is scheduled to open the workshop tomorrow in Nasese, Suva.
3 NEW NURSING STATION TO BENEFIT MALAKE WOMEN
The establishment of a new nursing station on Malake island in the Ra province will benefit the residents living there, especially the women who often face difficulties travelling to other health facilities in the province.
The villagers highlighted to the Prime Minister Hon. Voreqe Bainimarama when he recently visited the island that there was a great need to have a new nursing station. They highlighted that women and children often find it difficult to cross a sea passage just to visit health facilities,.
The Assistant Minister for Rural and Maritime Development Hon. Joeli Cawaki who was present at the same meeting informed the villagers that Government was aware of the need for a health facility on the island. “Government is aware of the request for a nursing station and all the paper works have been done and has been incorporated as a project that will be undertaken next year,” Hon. Cawaki informed.
Government, he said, had worked on opening up nursing stations in Nacula in Yasawa, Nagatagata in Nadarivatu, Cuvu and Vatukarasa in Nadroga and Malake was earmarked for 2016.
Works on the nursing station in Malake is expected start early next year with a view to complete the station in April. Once complete, more than 1,000 residents on the island will benefit from this health development.
4 Youth told to utilise land, don’t wait for assistance
Government has urged the youth of Naitasiri to look at the idle land in their province as a source of income.
This was highlighted by the Assistant Minister for Youth and Sports Hon Iliesa Delana at the opening of the Rara Methodist Church Festival at the Naluwai grounds last Friday (24 April).
“There are miles of idle lands in your province and also in the district of Rara,” said Hon. Delana. “I urge young people to strive to utilise their God-given resources, which is the land and earn from it.”
“Don’t wait and rely on Government to bring development,” added Hon. Delana. “You can earn and change your lives if you are dedicated to fully utilise the idle lands around you and become rich.”
“I’m urging you locals to increase your land or farm produce and compete with successful farmers of other ethnicity feeding the Suva and Nausori markets,” said Hon Delana.
Rara Methodist Circuit’s reverend Mr Akapusi Tumate said; “The message from the Hon. Assistant Minister was a timely one and I hope the young people of Rara will take heed of the advice.”
“They have an abundance of natural resources but they lack the will to utilise them for their benefit,” said the reverend.
He added that such reminders are always needed to motivate the current generation of young people “who mostly rely on handouts and their elders rather than working hard and reaping its rewards.”
The annual festival also includes a sevens and netball tournament. The Assistant Minister reminded the young people of Naitasiri “to abide by the rules and respect game officials and abstain from unnecessary fights during and after matches.”
“The playground is meant for running and passing the balls. If you want to use your hands or fist, look for a ring or a boxing coach to further your boxing career,” he said.
He has urged the youth to develop an early respect for the rules of the game and become good sportsman if they want to pursue a future career in sports.
5 NEW AGREEMENT SIGNED TO ADDRESS RHEUMATIC TREATMENT FOR YOUNG FIJIANS
The Ministry of Health and Medical Services signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) today with Cure Kids New Zealand to strengthen all aspects of acute rheumatic fever and rheumatic heart disease (RHD) prevention, detection and management at a national level.
The burden of RHD in Fiji is significant; contributing to disability and premature death in children and young people.
The four-year Fiji RHD control and prevention project aims to reduce RHD related mortality and morbidity in Fiji by developing and implementing:
· A comprehensive national register-based RHD secondary prevention programme with an associated quality improvement process;
· Best practice guidelines for the clinical care of patients with acute rheumatic fever/RHD;
· A model for RHD early case detection including a national case detection programme; and
· Primary prevention guidelines including national health promotion and awareness activities
The FJ $5m (approx.) project is primarily funded through the New Zealand Partnerships for International Development Fund and Cure Kids Key Partner Accor Hotels, with further funding support from FIJI Water Foundation.
While signing the agreement, the Ministry’s acting permanent secretary Dr Meciusela Tuicakau said that the Health Ministry is grateful for the agreement signed today.
‘We understand and recognise the funding provided by MFAT and NZ government for strengthening and improving care for our children and adults with RHD thereby reducing mortality and morbidity”, Dr Tuicakau said
“The Funding will also build capacity amongst our local staff on better quality care for our patients and their families”.
Cure Kids CEO Ms Vicki lee said she was delighted with the huge milestone for work in Fiji.
“This important collaboration will make a real difference to the lives of many young children in Fiji who are living with, or at risk of developing RHD.”
‘We are looking forward to working in partnership with the Fiji RHD Control team to realise the ambitious objectives of the project with the ultimate beneficiaries being the precious children of Fiji”, Ms Lee added
Both parties are looking forward to the implementation of the provisions in the agreement and will encourage their teams to support and collaborate closely for better outcomes.
6 Social Welfare recipients equipped with tools to generate income
Social welfare recipients in the central division were today presented with equipment to assist them to generate income.
This latest development was made possible for welfare recipients through a partnership agreement between the MH (Morris Hedstrom) and Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation.
The Minister, Hon. Rosy Akbar, was present at MHCC in Suva today to handover the giveaways to 8 of the social welfare recipients who took part in the MH’s monthly promotional draw competitions. The giveaways included 4 Kawasaki brush cutters, each worth $799, two Brother sewing machines worth $369.00 each and one Watts Solar Panel worth $349.
The winners are recipients of government’s Poverty Benefit Scheme and Care and Protection Program. They are assisted through monthly cash allowances and $50 monthly food vouchers which they had redeemed at the MH supermarkets.
While speaking at the event, Minister Akbar said that this initiative is created to economically empower social welfare recipients.
“We believe that the tools that are given to you will assist the welfare recipients to earn a living. This initiative is closely aligned with the Ministry’s Welfare Graduation Program through which we equip the welfare recipients with tools to help then venture into workfare. The Ministry is grateful to MH’s for this partnership to ensure that together, we make a positive difference in the lives of the underprivileged individuals and families.
“We had similar initiatives undertaken for the welfare recipients in Nadi and Ba last week. The Ministry has over 20,000 welfare recipients, so to the winners here today, I encourage you to make good use of these tools. For those who are presented with sewing machines, should you need training the Ministry will arrange that for you,” Minister Akbar said.
64 year old widow, Ms Mereani Vakatoboicu was overwhelmed to receive a Brother Sewing Machine. Ms Vakatoboicu who lives in Veisari, Lami is being assisted through the Care and Protection since 2006.
“I have always been passionate about sewing and in the past years I had been using needles for sewing. I am thankful to the Ministry and MH’s for providing me with this wonderful gift that would help me to sew school uniforms and sulu jaba to earn income for my living,” Ms Vakatoboicu said.