Sunday, May 30, 2010

Ba province seals joint venture deal

by Margaret Wise

Fiji Times - Monday, May 31, 2010
THE province of Ba has become the first district to explore the business of twinning with an overseas partner, choosing to undertake joint venture projects in Fiji with a province in China.
Last week Ba Provincial Holdings, the business arm of the council, signed a memorandum of understanding with Zhejiang Province from the People's Republic of China for partnership in local projects and initiatives. The signing took place last Friday at the Sheraton Fiji Resort on Denarau. The Ba Province was represented by Isimeli Bose, chairman of the Ba Provincial Council and Zhejiang Province was represented by Jin Deshui, Vice Governor Zhejiang Provincial People's Government.
"After our initial discussion, we agreed that the best businesses for us to go into together were shipping, minerals, bio-fuel, hardware and broadcasting," said Mr Bose who confirmed that the signing of the MOU was only the first stage of talks with the Chinese province.
He said the next step in their proposed joint venture was a feasibility study to further determine the viability of businesses.
"They will send a team to work with us on a feasibility study and depending on the outcome, we will begin work on the proposed areas," Mr Bose said.
The Chinese delegation included senior government officials and members of State-owned and private businesses.

Ba leader backs new village laws

Margaret Wise
Fiji Times - Monday, May 31, 2010
BA Provincial Council chairman Ratu Meli Saukuru believes the proposed new village bylaws are good and should have been introduced much earlier.
He said this despite not having sighted a copy of the document himself.
"I have not seen it yet but I believe it is a good thing and should have been brought in earlier because a lot of villages do not have proper rules and regulations," Ratu Meli said.
"We need to have some kind of reference point to solve disputes and maintain order in our villages."
Fiji's biggest provincial council is awaiting the arrival of the bylaws so that consultation can begin with the 107 turaga-ni-koro in the province.
"First, the village heads have to take the document back to their respective villages and go over it with their people before bringing it back to us.
"We will then compile all the feedback and present a report to the Fijian Affairs Board."
Ratu Meli said he also supported the introduction of the proposed village by-laws because it gave headmen a stronger power base.
"In the past, if the turaga-ni-koro couldn't resolve a dispute or issue then unless the police were informed, nothing happened," he said.
"With these new bylaws, any conflict, dispute or issue that can't be resolved at village level will be forwarded to the court system and I think this gives the bylaws more teeth."

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Chiefly Positions to be Confirmed

Fiji Broadacasting Corporation, May 27, 2010 

It is important that indigenous people confirm with their chiefs if development in the rural areas are to progress as required by the present Government.

This was the message given to the people of Cakaudrove by Assistant Permanent Secretary in the Indigenous Ministry, Col Apakuki Kurusiga when opening the Cakaudrove Provincial Council meeting at Yaro Village in Nasavusavu this morning.

Col Kurusiga told the delegates at the meeting that this is an issue not only Cakaudrove is falling behind in, but it is the whole of Fiji.

He said the issue will involve meetings of village people, the Native Land Commission and the Ministry if those that were chosen were confirmed by Government.

Col Kurusiga said that out of the 1,233 Yavusa Heads only 653 have been confirmed and of the 4324 Mataqali heads only half have been confirmed.

In the Province of Cakaudrove, Col Kurusiga said only 42 of the 98 heads of Yavusas have been confirmed by Government and only 133 of the 358 Mataqali heads have been confirmed.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Support for village bylaws in Fiji in indigenous community

Radio New Zealand International - 26 May, 2010

An expert on indigenous affairs in Fiji, Dr Paul Geraghty, says there is considerable support within the Fijian community for a reintroduction of village laws.

The bylaws being proposed are intended to curb what is seen a growing trend of poor behaviour.

The planned provisions are said to control dress in the village, including the banning of shorts and trousers for women and curfews for students.

Dr Geraghty, who is the head of Language and Linguistics at the University of the South Pacific, says this is not the first time efforts have been made to bring the rules back:

“A lot of people, including a lot of Fijians themselves, felt the abolition of such rules was too soon and it has resulted in a lot laxness among Fijians, too much consumption of kava, children not being well nourished and also in the loss of a lot of traditional arts for example house building, farming and fishing and this kind of thing.”

Dr Geraghty says previous attempts to re-introduce the regulations have failed because of the feeling there should be one law for all the people of Fiji.

Queen Elizabeth Visit to Fiji & Tonga 1953

Cakaudrove Province Online Website ( Launched

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Namosi provincial Council begins consultations

Fiji Village News - 24 May 2010

The Namosi provincial Council has begun week long consultations relating to the proposed village by-laws.

Roko Tui Namosi, Sakiusa Karavaki confirmed that their officials will visit the five Tikinas namely Naqarawai, Wainikoroluve, Veinuqa, Namosi and Veivatuloa to gather their submissions.

Karavaki highlighted that one of the submissions that was raised at their meeting which has been taken on board is the liqour drinking in the villages.

Another submission is the approval from the Health Ministry on how the houses in the villages are constructed which should be strong enough when cyclone strikes.

Last week the Roko Tui and assistant Roko Tui of Namosi and Serua met and discussed about the proposed village by-laws.

Meanwhile the Proposed Village By-laws are expected to feature prominently in the two day Cakaudrove provincial council meeting.

Chairman of the Cakaudrove Provincial Council, Emitai Boladuadua said that with the deadline set for the end of next month, all the tikina heads from around the province are expected to debate the proposed by-laws.

The Cakaudrove Provincial Meeting was supposed to be held in Somosomo Village in Taveuni but as a result of the impact of Hurricane Tomas, the two day meeting was shifted to Savusavu.

Meanwhile, the hosting village of Yaroi revealed that they will be catering for a total of 70 people for the two day meeting which will be held this Wednesday and Thursday.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Village apologises to Tonga for killings

by Serafina Silaitoga

Fiji Times - Tuesday, May 18, 2010
FOR the villagers of Navave in Bua, being forgiven for a murderous act committed by their ancestors is a major relief.
And they believe the apology will bring success to them and their descendants.
Their apology was accepted by a member of the Tongan royal family, Princess Suilikutapu, at the village last Friday.
About 159 years ago, the villagers of Navave killed a group of Tongan missionaries who had visited the village to spread the message of Christianity.
It is believed the Tongan delegation had travelled to Bua to escort the chiefly families of Tui Vuya and Buli Raviravi back to their homes. The two chiefly families have Tongan links.
When the Tongans arrived, they were not allowed to return. Instead they were killed by the villagers, who believed their acts would protect their chiefs.
Princess Suilikutapu praised the villagers for their efforts at reconciliation, adding that it was the best way to unite humanity.
"For me, it's simply following the paths of Jesus Christ who started reconciliation between God and mankind," she said.
"I believe such a move is the only way forward for us to remain united and in one."
Princess Suilikutapu is the daughter of the late Prince Tuipelehake, Tonga's former prime minister of 25 years from 1965 to 1990.
The reconciliation program, led by Christian Mission Fellowship president Pastor Suliasi Kurulo, who hails from Navave Village, saw villagers rejoicing as they had atoned for the wrong of their forefathers.
Pastor Kurulo said he experienced hardship and struggles as a young village boy.
"I used to get sick all the time and I wrote to my dad and told him to pray for me because everyday I felt sick in school," he said.
"I couldn't study well but after my father prayed for me, I felt a breakthrough because I didn't get sick anymore and my studies went well and because I totally turned to Jesus."
Pastor Kurulo said the forgiveness would now open doors of opportunity for the villagers of Navave as God had sealed a bond that had been broken between the people of Tonga and those from Navave.
"I asked for forgiveness when I travelled to Tonga once but we needed to organise one for the village so we have done that and God has blessed us with an opportunity of reconciliation," he said.
"So our generation will prosper from today and we believe that."

Kadavu pledges support to prison's plea

Fiji Times - Monday, May 17, 2010

THE Commissioner of Prisons' plea to the Kadavu Provincial Council to accept the responsibility of their men who are discharged from prison was answered by the council.
Fiji Prisons and Correctional Services Commissioner Brigadier Ioane Naivalurua pleaded with members of the Kadavu Provincial Council during their visit to the prisons facility last week.
"This year, 14 inmates from your province will be discharged from our care, so far six have been discharged, one has returned and eight are yet to be released.
"I am pleading with you today that you as the family, lotu and vanua accept responsibility and care of your sons who will be discharged, so that they don't come back to us," he said.
A statement on the Fiji prisons website quoted Brigadier Naivalurua as saying that it was a blessed job to look after children of God who had fallen off track.
Former Kadavu Provincial Council chairman Ratu Josefa Nawalowalo said the province agreed to support the Fiji prisons initiative.
He said the province would work with the prisons service, Ministry of Agriculture and other government agencies to form aftercare programs for ex-inmates.
Ratu Josefa said the province could use the skills the inmates learned in prison to develop infrastructure on Kadavu.
He said the visit to FPCS was an eye-opener and what they saw changed the negative perception they had.
Lau was the first province to visit the prison last year and provincial council delegates spoke to inmates.
Representatives from six of the 14 provinces have visited Naboro Prison to see what prisoners are doing to rehabilitate themselves and the skills being acquired to help them get jobs.
End of story

Ratu Totivi is Tui Tavua

Fiji Times - Monday, May 17, 2010

THE Native Lands Commission has ruled that Ratu Totivi Kama Ratu is the rightful holder of the Tui Tavua title.
NLC chairman Ratu Viliame Tagivetaua, while delivering his ruling on Friday, told the people of Tavua that neither the commission nor the government would unite them.
Ratu Viliame said the onus rested on the villagers themselves.
The Bua chief made his ruling from the evidence he collected from Ratu Totivi, a relative of claimant Vereti Naruku and representatives from the vanua.
Mr Naruku is also of the chiefly Tokatoka Nadula, Mataqali Tilivasewa of Yavusa Bila in Tavua
Tikina representative Apisalome Ulusova said they hoped the two factions would unite and work together for sake of the people.
Mr Ulusova said the two factions were from the same chiefly clan and the vanua wanted to see them united.
He agreed that it was everyone's responsibility to ensure that there was no split in Tavua.
Ratu Totivi is the younger brother of the late Tui Tavua Ratu Ovini Bokini, who died on January 15 last year.

Sunday, May 9, 2010


Fiji Sun - 10 May 2010

He said the company would be an independent entity of Fiji Prisons with professional people running it. 

However, he said when the company would need labourers; he would give the first chance to inmates.

“They will be paid just like normal workers but we’re going to bank their salaries and will give them that when they’re released,” he said.

The business arm of the Fiji Prisons is established under the Prisons and Corrections Act 2006. 

The Act states: 

“Provision may be made by regulation, and supported by commissioner’s orders, encouraging the establishment and development of prison enterprises, and the appropriate involvement of prisoners so as to enhance their rehabilitation and opportunities, and such provision may include:

n the setting of prices and charges on a commercial basis;
n the imposition of the ‘user pays’ principle;
n the establishment and proper operation and accounting of special funds established in accordance with law to facilitate commercial enterprises; and
n any other matter that fosters prison enterprises and the meaningful participation of appropriate prisoners in them.

Mr Naivalurua said preparations included the planting of 28,000 cassava stems worth $19,050 at 90 cents per kilogramme and 196,000 dalo worth $191,600 at $1 per kg. 

The piggery has 229 head worth $47,550. They have 28 cows worth $12,500. They have a fish and vegetable farm.

He said all were managed by inmates who had gained good experience from the hands-on training. 

He said it was part of training to prepare inmates for a good future when released.

“We’re preparing the inmates to live a better future when they’re released and this will require positive support from members of the public, especially when they’re released.”

He urged people to change their perception of inmates. 

Mr Naivalurua said the main problem they faced was the acceptance of the inmates back into society.

However, he said their awareness workshops through the Yellow Ribbon Programme was now making a positive impact.

Prisons offer ‘bread of life’

10 May 2010 

The Fiji Prisons and Correction Service will soon start selling bread to the public.

To becalled ‘bread of life’, the loaves will be baked by by inmates of the maximum security jail, Fiji Prisons Commissioner Brigadier-General Ioane Naivalurua said.

The Fiji Sun was on Saturday granted a tour of the Naboro prison farm and the bakery inside the maximum prison. 

He said when released, the inmate bakers would use their baking skills to find jobs or set up their own business.  Many had shown their interest in the bread of life, he said.  They will be selling all types of bread and will soon be on the shelves.