PM: Big News On The Way

It would cover Govt hous­ing as­sis­tance in re­build­ing

Fiji Sun - - Front Page - Maika Bolatiki

An an­nounce­ment by Prime Min­is­ter Voreqe Ban­i­marama is ex­pected to fo­cus on re­build­ing homes dam­aged by Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Win­ston in Fe­bru­ary. The Prime Min­is­ter con­firmed yes­ter­day he is about to make a ma­jor state­ment.

Prime Min­is­ter Voreqe Bain­i­marama will be mak­ing a spe­cial an­nounce­ment to­mor­row. Speak­ing to evac­uees at Balata Pri­mary School in Tavua yes­ter­day, he said the an­nounce­ment would be about Gov­ern­ment hous­ing as­sis­tance for houses dam­aged and partly dam­aged by Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Win­ston. He said Gov­ern­ment had al­ready an­nounced that they were re­spon­si­ble for build­ing and re­pair­ing the houses that were dam­aged by the cy­clone. From the sur­vey made, he said about 30,000 homes were dam­aged. The PM said some peo­ple had started their re­build­ing and some were wait­ing for Gov­ern­ment. The PM’s an­nounce­ment would in­form home own­ers when the Gov­ern­ment would start the re­build­ing.

He told the peo­ple of Balata Set­tle­ment that there were too many houses to be re­built and there was a lack of man­power. For home own­ers, he said, it would be bet­ter for them to re­build their own homes. He said that would be part of his an­nounce­ment on Satur­day. Mr Bain­i­marama had ear­lier told that Fiji Sun that home own­ers could also be given cash to buy their hous­ing ma­te­ri­als and start their own re­build­ing. The Prime Min­is­ter said for the af­fected peo­ple they needed to be pa­tient with Gov­ern­ment.

Balata ad­vi­sory coun­cil­lor Bal­bant Singh told the Fiji Sun yes­ter­day that they had com­pleted their sur­vey and the re­port was with the Tavua dis­trict of­fi­cer Maria Keav­oli He said some had started their own re­build­ing. Mr Singh said they were happy that the Prime Min­is­ter would be mak­ing the hous­ing an­nounce­ment and for them they would carry out their own re­build­ing. “We’re not go­ing to wait for Gov­ern­ment’s con­trac­tors,” he said. Mr Singh thanked the Prime Min­is­ter for his visit and said he had brought smiles to all those at Balata Set­tle­ment.

For their food ra­tions, he said they had all re­ceived theirs. The Prime Min­is­ter in­ter­vened and said for those that still needed food ra­tions they had to give their names to Mr Singh and he would con­tact the DO or the Com­mis­sioner Western. To­day the Prime Min­is­ter will be vis­it­ing those af­fected by the cy­clone in Nadi.

Photo: Sky­ward In­dus­tries. The com­pany does map­ping, sur­vey­ing and me­dia pro­duc­tions. CEO Ke­viin Rot­saert can be con­tacted on 9984411.

As Trop­i­cal Cy­clone Zena moves fur­ther away from the Fiji group some ar­eas were still un­der­wa­ter, but the flood wa­ters were re­ced­ing. Pic­tured is the Nadi Mu­nic­i­pal Mar­ket, Bus Sta­tion and some shops cap­tured on Wed­nes­day by a Sky­ward In­dus­tries drone.

Photo: Vil­imoni Va­ganalau

Prime Min­is­ter Voreqe Bain­i­marama vis­it­ing LDS Church evac­u­a­tion cen­tre in Calia, Navua.

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