NATION

Lawaki Residents Demonstrate Challenge Of Helping Children Cross Korotari River

Vunimoli and Korotari advisory counsellor Navin Kumar said: “Over the years the streams get flooded and the students are forced to cross.”
04 Mar 2021 10:12
Lawaki Residents Demonstrate Challenge Of Helping Children Cross Korotari River
Lawaki Settlement residents demonstrate how they would help their children cross the Korotari River on a daily basis. Photo: Renu Radhika

The struggle is real for residents of Lawaki Settlement.

Yesterday, parents and guardians of the settlement outside Labasa demonstrated how they would carry their children on their backs and take them across the Korotari River, on any given day.

A risky endeavour but that’s what the residents have done for many years.

The working class and those who wish to go into town or run errands cross the river and change at the other end of the bank.

Vunimoli and Korotari advisory counsellor Navin Kumar said: “Over the years the streams get flooded and the students are forced to cross.”

He said the students had to walk three-kilometres to get to the main road and then catch the bus to school.

Village head man Rupeni Ravenu said they have had to struggle like this on a daily basis.

He said this was very hard for the students because after crossing the river, they get dressed.

Mr Ravenu said more than 40 students cross the river daily.

He said parents and guardians usually assist their children to cross the river in the morning and afternoon.

“When the weather condition is very bad the students are asked to stay home,” he said.

Mr Ravenu said the situation got worse when the weather was against them and the residents needed medical attention.

“At times, villagers use bilibilis (bamboo raft) for crossing when the water level is high.”

There are around 80 residents living in the settlement.

“We are requesting the Government authorities to build a crossing, which can help the people of Lawaki Settlement in many ways,” Mr Ravenu said.

Commissioner Northern Uraia Rainima is understood to be on leave.

A call to Acting Commissioner Northern Vishwa Deo said he had begun work. Attempts to contact Mr Rainima were unsuccessful when this edition went to press.

Edited by Ranoba Baoa

Feedback: renu.radhika@fijisun.com.fj



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