COVID-19 | NATION

COVID-19: Naitasiri Market Vendors Stranded In Capital City

Market vendor Losalini Liku will spend at least 14 days away from her five-month-old son and husband as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown in Suva.
06 Apr 2020 11:47
COVID-19: Naitasiri Market Vendors Stranded In Capital City
Market vendors from Nauluvatu village, Naitasiri stranded in Suva. From left; Asenaca Vakacoa, Sakeo Ragata, Litia Likuvasakula and Luisa Senisalusalu. Photo: Kelera Sovasiga

Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete, is seeking the understanding of the public at large with regard to their containment efforts and border restrictions amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

This follows reports that some people were stranded in the confined areas and were seeking assistance to cross the border.

Dr Waqainabete said: “Nobody wants to see a large-scale outbreak of this virus in Fiji and that means making hard calls today to keep this virus at bay.

“While this lockdown continues, we are doubling our efforts to ensure this virus does not spread further.”

Stranded vendors

Market vendor Losalini Liku will spend at least 14 days away from her five-month-old son and husband as a result of the COVID-19 lockdown in Suva.

Ms Liku was one of the 23 market vendors from Nauluvatu in Naitasiri who are now stranded in the capital city.

The Sawani junction, leading to villages in Naitasiri has been cordoned off by Police since 5am last Friday morning. Her husband, Lemeki Valako, is also stranded in Nausori because he was unable to pass through the checkpoint last Friday.

Ms Liku said: “It is really hard to think about it that my husband and I are stuck in two different places not able to go home to our five-month-old son,” Ms Liku said.

“I have my son’s milk, food and the grocery for my family back in the village. My baby is being looked after by his grandmother, but I need to be home.

“When we left the village at 4pm on Thursday for the market, we had no idea there was going to be a lockdown.

“Just when we were trying to organise ourselves on Thursday night, we were told that Suva was going to be in lockdown at 5am.

“It was close to the curfew time and our produce was not even sold to cater for our shopping expenses to take back home.”

She said she and other market vendors from Nauluvatu, Naitasiri, will rely on their relatives in Suva to accommodate them.

Edited by Naisa Koroi

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